Devotional – May 1, 2021


Let not your heart be troubled, you believe in God, believe also in Me.  John 14:1

How many times have you heard the passage above and glossed over it because it was so familiar?  How many times have you heard or read it when you truly needed to hear and take it heart?  Was it ignored or did it sustain you through whatever state you were in at the time?  When you look at this simple and short passage you might pass it over as something that is not relevant to you and your daily life.  Think again!  There is not a moment when we do not need to know and acknowledge the existence and the importance of Jesus Christ in our lives.

After a Pentecost-like experience at the Methodist Camp Meeting at Mountain Lake Park, Maryland, Lelia Morris began writing hymns at her sewing machine.  As she devoted more and more time to the Methodist Holiness movement, her hymns became increasingly popular.

One of her finest hymns came early in her songwriting experiences.  One Sunday in 1898, while working at the Methodist Camp Meeting at Mountain Lake Park, Lelia assisted at the altar of the morning service.  The subject of the sermon was repentance, and a large number of people came forward to confess their sins.

One woman was in obvious spiritual anguish.  Lelia went to pray with her.   So did song leader, Dr. Henry Gilmour, author of “The Haven of Rest.”  The preacher, L. H. Baker, was also present, and all three converged on the woman.  Wow, can you imagine how intense that moment had to be?  There was a time in the Methodist church that this particular practice of “alter all” was standard at the end of every Sunday service.  We have navigated away from that tradition, and most churches have either eliminated it altogether or replaced it with a different type of opportunity to pray or speak with Stephen Ministers or appointed leaders in the church after the service, either in a Prayer Room or at the altar.  But, on this occasion, three persons intent on helping made themselves known to this young woman, offering advice and prayers.

“Just now your doubting give o’er,” said Leila.

“Just now reject Him no more,” added Dr. Gilmour.

“Just now throw open the door,” said Rev. Baker.

“Let Jesus come into your heart,” concluded Leila.


After the service had closed, Lelia took those phrases back to her room and worked them into the hymn, “Let Jesus Come into You Heart,” with its popular chorus

Just now, your doubtings give oer;

Just now, reject Him no more:

Just now, throw open the door;

Let Jesus come into your heart.

As long as she lived, Lelia served the Lord with tireless zeal.  But in 1913, her eyesight began failing.  Her son built a huge blackboard with oversized staff lines so she could continue composing, but — within a year she was totally blind.  Of course, that didn’t stop her!  Lelia composed hymns in her mind and remembered them until her daughter, Fanny came for her annual visit.  Then she would dictate them all – dozens of them each year – while Fanny wrote down the words and music.  Her life’s attitude is best described in another of her popular hymns that reflected her attitude toward growing older, “Sweeter as the Years Go By.”

Sweeter as the years go by, sweeter as the years go by,

Richer, fuller, deeper, Jesus’ love is sweeter,

Sweeter as the years go by.


Grace and Peace to you!