"WHEN LOVE SHINES IN"
"…He that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God…" (1 Jn. 4.16)
INTRO.: A song which encourages us to dwell in love that we might dwell in God is "When Love Shines In" (#8 in Sacred Selections for the Church). The text was written by Carrie E. (Mrs. Frank A.) Breck (1855-1934). It is dated 1894. Some of her other well known songs, most of which were produced with music by Grant C. Tullar, include "Face to Face," Nailed to the Cross," and "Shall I Crucify My Savior." The tune for "When Love Shines In" was composed by William James Kirkpatrick (1838-1921). The song was copyrighted in 1902 by Kirkpatrick. The copyright was renewed in 1930 by the Hope Publishing Co. Among hymnbooks published by members of the Lord’s church during the twentieth century for use in churches of Christ, the song appeared in the 1959 Hymnal edited by Marion Davis. Today it may be found in the 1978/1983 (Church) Gospel Songs and Hymns edited by V. E. Howard; in addition to Sacred Selections.
The song identifies several things that having the love of Jesus in our lives will do.
I. Stanza 1 says that it will gladden our hearts
"Jesus comes with power to gladden, When love shines in,
Every heart that woe can sadden, When love shines in.
Love will teach us how to pray; Love will drive the gloom away, T
urn our darkness into day, When love shines in."
A. Only the Lord has the power to put true gladness in our hearts: Ps. 4.7
B. The reason that we need this gladness is that in this world of sin there are many woes and griefs that can sadden us: 1 Pet. 2.19
C. However, love will teach us how to pray so that the gloom can be driven away and our darkness turned to day as we make our requests known to Him and receive His peace: Phil. 4.6-7
II. Stanza 2 says that it will bring beauty
"How the world will glow with beauty, When love shines in,
And the heart rejoice in duty, When love shines in.
Trials may be sanctified, And the soul in peace abide;
Life will all be glorified, When love shines in."
A. Even though the world is filled with evil, when we consider the love that the Lord has had toward mankind, we can see His beauty: Ps. 27.4
B. Then when we recognize the beauty of the Lord, we can rejoice in our duty to Him and our fellowman: Eccl. 12.13-14
C. As a result of seeing His beauty, trials may be sanctified and indeed all life will be glorified, knowing that our tribulations can work good: Rom. 5.1-5
III. Stanza 3 says that it will brighten our sorrows
"Darkest sorrow will grow brighter, When love shines in,
And the heaviest burden lighter, When love shines in.
‘Tis the glory that will throw Light to show us where to go;
O the heart shall blessing know When love shines in."
A. Life is certainly filled with dark sorrows: Ps. 13.2
B. However, knowledge of God’s love for us can make even the heaviest burden lighter because we can cast them on the Lord: Ps. 55.22
C. To help us bear our burdens, He gives us glory that will throw His light on our pathway: Ps. 119.105
IV. Stanza 4 says that it will help us find a home in heaven
"We may have unfading splendor, When love shines in,
And a friendship true and tender, When love shines in.
When earth’s victories shall be won, And our life in heaven begun,
There will be no need of sun, For love shines in.
A. Thus, even in this life the love of God brings us unfading splendor because it points us to a hope of an inheritance that will not fade away: 1 Pet. 1.3-5
B. It also establishes us in a friendship true and tender because Jesus, who came to bring us eternal life in heaven, will be friend to all who keep His commandments: Jn. 15.13
C. If we follow Him, when earth’s victories are won, He will lead us to a place where there will be no need of sun: Rev. 21.23
CONCL.: The chorus reminds us of the importance of having the love of God in our hearts.
"When love shines in, When love shines in,
How the heart is tuned to singing, When love shines in;
When love shines in, When love shines in,
Joy and peace to others bringing, When love shines in."
There are blessings to be received, both in this life and in the life that is to come, by turning to the Lord and following His will "When Love Shines In."