Sheet music, glasses, pen

My Jesus I Love Thee

In Daily Devotional, Spiritual Growth, Stories, Worship by Steven Sukkau

“Story Behind the Song” Sunday

Bible Verse: “Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.” 1 Timothy 4:12

Scripture Reading: 1 John 4:1-21

While seasoned preachers and pastors penned some of the best hymns of old with decades of theological education, sometimes we discount the experience of a young, even brand-new Christian.

Such is not the case with My Jesus I Love Thee, written by teen William Ralph Featherston.

Originally a poem, it’s believed Featherston wrote My Jesus I Love Thee between the age of 12 and 16 in Montreal after becoming a Christian. Tragically, Featherston would pass away at the young age of 27 in 1873, but not before mailing the poem to his aunt, who lived in Los Angeles.

It wasn’t until years after his death that the poem was discovered by Adoniram Judson Gordon, the founder of a theological seminary, who added a melody to the words and published it in a book of hymns. The rest, as they say, is history. The hymn would become a worldwide staple in churches for decades.

His raw emotion and expression of thankfulness and love struck a chord in millions of hearts. Writing with the passion of a teenager, yet with the wisdom of someone years beyond his age, Featherston captures the beautiful, intimate relationship we have with our Saviour, and the glorious future that awaits us in eternity.

Are you a teenager? Never discount the gifts and experiences you have and can share with others.

Likewise, for those who are no longer teens, it’s important to listen to the younger generation; they have much to teach, if we take the time to listen.

My Jesus, I love Thee, I know Thou art mine;
For Thee all the follies of sin I resign.
My gracious Redeemer, my Savior art Thou;
If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus,’ tis now.

I love Thee because Thou has first loved me,
And purchased my pardon on Calvary’s tree.
I love Thee for wearing the thorns on Thy brow;
If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus,’ tis now.

I’ll love Thee in life, I will love Thee in death,
And praise Thee as long as Thou lendest me breath;
And say when the death dew lies cold on my brow,
If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus,’ tis now.

In mansions of glory and endless delight,
I’ll ever adore Thee in heaven so bright;
I’ll sing with the glittering crown on my brow;
If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus,’ tis now.


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About
Steven Sukkau
Steven Sukkau is a writer, journalist and radio broadcaster living on the Canadian prairies with his wife, two daughters and hyperactive terrier.
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Steven Sukkau
Steven Sukkau is a writer, journalist and radio broadcaster living on the Canadian prairies with his wife, two daughters and hyperactive terrier.