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One-a-Day...for the Heart: I Need Thee Every Hour


Do we really need Jesus every hour? One of the most endearing things about the Lord is that He is reachable all the time—day or night. In pain, sickness, sorrow, defeat, turmoil, confusion, death, loneliness, dread, and fear, He is a prayer away. He's eager to share in our moments of joy, celebration, good news, and victories as well. Every hour, every day, He never turns His back on us or grows weary of us.

The lyrics of the beloved hymn written in 1872 by Annie S. Hawks are as follows:

1. I need Thee every hour, most gracious Lord; no tender voice like Thine can peace afford.

I need Thee, oh, I need Thee; every hour I need Thee;

Oh, bless me now, my Savior, I come to Thee.

2. I need Thee every hour, stay Thou nearby; temptations lose their pow’r when Thou art nigh.

3. I need Thee every hour, in joy or pain; come quickly and abide, or life is vain.

4. I need Thee every hour; teach me Thy will; and Thy rich promises in me fulfill.

5. I need Thee every hour, most Holy One; oh, make me Thine indeed, Thou blessed Son.  

     Do we really need Jesus every hour? As an elementary student, I recall panicky, fearful moments when the teacher would announce, “Clear everything off your desks; take out a clean sheet of paper and a pencil.” Oh no! It was the dreaded pop quiz! Panic and fear gripped my little kid heart, and I silently hoped and prayed God would help me. He came near and helped me remember lessons I'd learned while He calmed my anxious heart time and time again.

    Many more episodes of sudden panic and fear would occur throughout the years—danger on bike rides or in the woods as I explored, angry dogs chasing me, more academic challenges in high school and college, terminal sickness, car accidents, childbirth, a near-drowning catastrophe in the ocean, sudden trauma and upset with family members—too many heart-in-throat moments to list. Yet, the Lord was faithful, no matter the day or time of the need.

     The Lord is a friend to those who fear Him, Psalm 25:14 declares. During times of loneliness and devastating betrayal, I have needed Him, sometimes literally every hour, to make it through dark times of friendlessness and heartache. He truly IS a friend like no other. During times of grief and sorrow, His friendship and comfort have been extended to me without my saying a word because He knows our needs before we even ask. Your Father knows your need before you even ask Him (Matthew 6:8 NLT). Every hour, every day.

     When we are perplexed about weighty decisions to make, He comes near to lead and guide us if we allow Him. Proverbs 3:6 (NLT) reminds us to seek His will in all we do, and He will show us which path to take. The best plans for our lives are set on course when Jesus is included in the planning and decision-making.

     The lyricist writes that temptations lose their pow'r when Thou art nigh. Every hour, every day, the Lord knows how little or how great the temptations are in our lives. When faced with the temptation to sin or slide back into old habits, we need Jesus to strengthen and fortify our ability to resist the devil's attempts to destroy our Christian character and effectiveness.

     Do we really need Jesus every hour? The answer is a resounding, emphatic “YES!” Oh, make me Thine indeed, Thou blessed Son!

© 2024, Chris Custer Werre

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