HIS EYE IS ON THE SPARROW
Civilla D. Martin, 1869–1948
Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father in heaven. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than sparrows. (Matthew 10:29–31)
Mrs. Civilla Martin, author of this gospel hymn text, tells of a visit in 1904 to a bedridden Christian friend. Mrs. Martin asked the woman if she ever got discouraged because of her physical condition. Her friend responded quickly: “Mrs. Martin, how can I be discouraged when my heavenly Father watches over each little sparrow and I know He loves and cares for me.” Within just a few minutes Mrs. Martin completed the writing of her new text, which has since been a source of much encouragement to many of God’s people.
It is interesting that our Lord chose the most common of all birds, sparrows of little value, to teach a profound truth: In God’s eyes, no one is insignificant! He is vitally concerned with even the details of our lives. Notice also that the Bible uses another bird to teach this inspiring truth: “Those who hope in the Lord will soar on wings like eagles …” (Isaiah 40:31). With an awareness of God’s concern for our lives and the promise of His enabling power to live victoriously, why should we be afraid?
Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior. (Habakkuk 3:17, 18)
Why should I feel discouraged, why should the shadows come, why should my heart be lonely and long for Heav’n and home, when Jesus is my portion? My constant Friend is He: His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me; His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.
“Let not your heart be troubled,” His tender word I hear, and resting on His goodness, I lose my doubts and fears; tho’ by the path He leadeth but one step I may see: His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me; His eye is on the sparrow, and I know we watches me.
Whenever I am tempted, whenever clouds arise, when songs give place to sighing, when hope within me dies, I draw the closer to Him; from care He sets me free; His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me; His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.
Refrain: I sing because I’m happy, I sing because I’m free, for His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.
For Today: Psalm 40:17; Matthew 6:28; Luke 12:6, 7, 22–31; James 1:1–11
Rest and rejoice in the assurance of God’s love. Seek to bring a word of cheerful encouragement to some sick or invalid individual. Remind him or her of God’s concern and the truth of this song.
Osbeck, K. W.
- Though I be poor and needy, the Lord thinketh on me: thou art mine helper and my deliverer: my God, make no tarrying. Psalm 40:17
- And why care ye for raiment? Learn how the Lilies of the field do grow: they are not wearied, neither spin: Matthew 6:28
- Are not five sparrows bought for two farthings, and yet not one of them is forgotten before God? Yea, and all the hairs of your head are numbered: fear not therefore: ye are more of value than many sparrows. Luke 12:6-7
- And he spake unto his disciples, Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat: neither for your body, what ye shall put on. The life is more than meat: and the body more than the raiment. Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap: which neither have storehouse nor barn, and yet God feedeth them: how much more better are ye than fowls? And which of you with taking thought, can add to his stature one cubit? If ye then be not able to do the least thing, why take ye thought for the raiment? Consider the lilies how they grow: they labor not, neither spin they: yet I say unto you, that Solomon himself in all his royalty was not clothed like one of these. If then God so clothe the grass which is today in the field, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, how much more will he clothe you, O ye of little faith? Therefore ask not what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither hang you in suspense. For all such things the people of the world seek for: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things. But rather seek ye after the kingdom of God, and all these things shall be cast upon you. Luke 12:22–31
- James a servant of God, and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve Tribes, which are scattered abroad, salutation. My brethren, count it exceeding joy, when ye fall into diverse tentations, Knowing that the trying of your faith bringeth forth patience, And let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, lacking nothing. If any of your lack wisdom, let him ask of God, which giveth to all men liberally, and reproacheth no man, and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, and waiver not: for he that waivereth, is like a wave of the sea, tossed of the wind, and carried away. Neither let that man think that he shall receive anything of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways. Let the brother of low degree rejoice in that he is exalted: Again, he that is rich, in that he is made low: for as the flower of the grass, shall he vanish away. For as when the sun riseth in the heat, then the grass withereth, and his flower falleth away, and the goodly shape of it perisheth: even so shall the rich man wither away in all his ways. James 1:1–11