Jesus, lover of my soul
Of all hymns in the English language this, no doubt, is loved the best. It was written in 1740 by the Rev.Charles Wesley; born 1707, died 1788. He was a clergyman of the Church of England, and took an active part in the Methodist movement, in which his brother John was the leader, and out of which all the Methodist churches have grown. The Wesleys put great faith in the power of hymns to teach religious truths to the people and to reach their hearts. Charles Wesley wrote more than 6000 hymns. Some were printed in hymn-books to be sung at the Methodist meetings, and some in tracts to be read and committed to memory at home. He was among the greatest of all hymn writers, and many of his hymns are sung in all branches of the Church.
[NOTE.—Verse 1, line 3. Nearerwaters. ' In a wide expanse of waters a distant part may be lashed into fury by a passing storm, whilst around a given ship there is perfect calm. Or the nearer waters may be affected, while the distant waters are sleeping in the silent air. In life, as in nature, storms are local. And men cry for help, not against distant dangers, but out of their immediate troubles. Their life is amid "the nearer waters " of temptations, and to them the Lover of souls is indispensable.' J. Julian.]