~ In The Garden ~
Written by C. Austin Miles in 1912
I was fortunate to have a wonderful relationship with both of my grandmothers. They were as different as night and day. The only similarities they shared, were that they loved God and their families, and that they had made a living farming. But they were both unique and very special to me! My paternal grandmother's name was Maybelle. She wasn't "fancy" in the least, and to say she was frugal, was putting it mildy. The one and only thing I ever knew her to splurge on was Jackson and Perkins Roses. It was a happy day around the farm, when the mailman delivered the annual J&P catalog, full of new and beautiful roses. Grandma Maybelle would browse the catalog for hours, circling new varieties to try, and I, myself looked on with excitement! Grandma was known over the county for her rose garden. If you know anything about the South, when you meet someone for the first time, it's common to be asked, "Who are your people?" When asked this, I proudly would say, my grandma is Maybelle, and she has the large rose garden on the hill in Beaverdam. Most knew exactly who I was referring to.
In 1988, four days before my birthday, I returned home after a date one Saturday night. Shortly after, the phone rang. Dread filled my heart, knowing that no good phone calls come after 11 p.m. As I listened to my Dad's end of the conversation, I knew that my life had been shattered ...my Grandma Maybelle had suffered a heart attack. She was gone in an instant. ...One that was so full of life and adventure, with no indication that she was anything but healthy. During her funeral, a quartet sang in four-part harmony, the most beautiful hymn, "In the Garden." It seemed so befitting for my dear grandmother.
In The Garden
I come to the garden alone, While the dew is still on the roses,And the voice I hear falling on my ear, The Son of God discloses.
Chorus....And He walks with me, and He talks with me.And He tells me I am His own; And the joy we share as we tarry there,None other has ever known.
He speaks and the sound of His voice, is so sweet the birds hush their singing,And the melody that He gave to me, Within my heart is singing.
C. Austin Miles was asked to write a song that would, "bring hope to the hopeless, rest to the weary, and downy pillows to dying beds." As he was seated in a dark room, he turned to John 20 (10-18), and read the story of the greatest morn in history.
It was a time of great anguish for Mary Magdalene, as she stood outside the empty tomb crying. Her precious Lord had been taken from her, and now His body was gone. ...two angels sat in the place He had lain. She cryed out in despair and turned around. A man Mary didn't recognize spoke to her. One she mistook for the gardener. It was Jesus. I wondered as I read this, how many times has Jesus spoken to me, and I didn't realize it was him. ...or maybe I just didn't listen.
Jesus then called her by name.....Mary. He called her by name! Chills run over me as I think that God and His son, Jesus, know us by our names! The chorus of the song says..."And he tells me I am His own." How exciting, how wonderful, that God knows each of us individually.
Psalm 139, is a beautiful passage that offers this assurance....
"O Lord, you have searched me and you know me." (v.1)
"For You created my inmost being, You knit me together in my mother's womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully made; Your works are wonderful,
I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place.
When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body.
All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be."
How amazing, God knows my name, and He knows each of your dear names! It is my prayer, that you know Him too! Even in the sad times, times of anguish, He gives us a melody and offers our hearts a reason to keep singing.....Hope and Love! ~Rhonda :)
Note: Next to 'The Old Rugged Cross, this has been one of the most popular gospel hymns ever written.
Pictures: Borrowed from Flickr