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Can you hear something so many times, say something so many times, think something some many times, that its meaning is lost?

Maybe its meaning isn’t lost, but its truth has become diffused.


I can’t imagine how many times I’ve heard or sung “Amazing Grace” in my 6 1/2 decades.

“Songs Of The Church” hymnal, #12.

But who needed a hymnal? Knew it by heart.

Maybe I “knew” it by heart, but “understood” it by head.

I sang it. I believed it. But it hadn’t yet knocked me to my knees.

I don’t remember the year. I don’t remember the day. I don’t remember the hour. But at some point in my adulthood I heard it for the several hundredth time like it was the first.

I could hardly breathe.

I understood words like wretch. lost. found. blind. see.


Could it be? Such a gift, for such a wretch? Like me?


Like me.

Like you.

Like every living wretch on earth.


So when days are dark and nights are long, I sing to myself with no need for a hymnal. For I know the words by heart.

And I believe every single one of them…….

Amazing Grace! how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch, like me!
I once was lost, but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.

’Twas grace that taught my heart to fear,
And grace my fears relieved;
How precious did that grace appear
The hour I first believed!

The Lord has promised good to me,
His word my hope secures;
He will my shield and portion be
As long as life endures.

When we’ve been there ten thousand years,
Bright shining as the sun,
We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise
Than when we first begun.

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