Hymns stick with us because the words are powerful. They speak to me. Nurture me. They’ve survived through the years and evolved into modern versions. One hymn that particularly strengthens me is Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus by Helen H. Lemmel. Third Day, Selah, Alan Jackson, Hillsong, and Michael W. Smith have recorded updated renditions. I like country, so Alan Jackson’s version appeals to me.
Consider the words of the refrain:
Turn your eyes upon Jesus. Where better to look? Who cares for us more, deserves our attention more? Looking toward Jesus calms me, comforts me, even lowers my blood pressure.
Look full in His wonderful face. A face of love and sacrifice, strength, reassurance, compassion.
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim. Things like a broken toe, floods, terrorists, job searches—the things I’m tempted to focus on instead.
In the light of His glory and grace. Glory that fills the earth and outshines anything on it. Grace that provides the way to God.
Turning my eyes upon Jesus should be my first reaction. I’m sorry to say it isn’t always, but I never regret doing so. A lesson I’m trying to remember: keep my eyes on Jesus instead of the wearying things of the earth and those things will fall into their rightful place. God is in control.
O soul, are you weary and troubled? No light in the darkness you see? There’s light for a look at the Savior, And life more abundant and free!
Through death into life everlasting He passed, and we follow Him there; O’er us sin no more hath dominion— For more than conqu’rors we are!
His Word shall not fail you—He promised; Believe Him, and all will be well: Then go to a world that is dying, His perfect salvation to tell!
Do you take comfort from hymns? Listen to the old ones, the new versions, or both?