Gentleman Jim . . !


EVEN now, nearly forty years after his death, from different households throughout the world flows out the rich, powerful voice of Jim Reeves.

A strong baritone, he sang country, pop and gospel and even beat the Beatles in record sales for many years during the fifties and early sixties.

But strangely, in the fullness of his voice there is a deep sadness that comes through and his love songs reflect an ache that seem to come from the very depths of his soul.

As you listen to him singing “Losing Your Love” and feel his sorrow in “Give me One More Kiss” or his pain in “When I lost you,” as we listen to Gentleman Jim, crying out, “If You Love Me Don’t Leave Me” there is a responsive ache in our own hearts.

“Am I Losing You?” shouts Jim in desperation and then takes his guitar, strums a few lines and retreats to “Just Call Me Lonesome”.

Jim Reeves sang from his heart. A heart that ached for love. But one song where his voice rises from the very depths of despair and where the agony that is within him looks and finds someone to hold onto is when he sings, “Precious Lord Take My Hand.” In that song Jim seems to have found a solace and quiet assurance.

The song was written by Thomas A. Dorsey in 1932. One day in that year Dorsey left his pregnant wife Nettie at home in Chicago and drove his Model A Ford to St Louis to sing at a gathering. All went well and the crowd responded enthusiastically to his songs.

At the end of Dorsey’s performance, he received a telegram with the tragic news that his wife had died in childbirth. Within hours the baby boy also died.

Filled with grief Dorsey was devastated. A few days after Nettie’s death, Dorsey sat down at the piano and began to play. He felt suddenly a sense of God’s peace and closeness and wrote the words of a new song.

‘Precious Lord, take my hand, Lead me on, let me stand; I am tired, I am weak, I am worn; Through the storm, through the night, Lead me on to the light; Take my hand, precious Lord, Lead me home.’

Years later Gentleman Jim made the same song famous when he sang it with hope and optimism, belief and confidence. I wonder what dark period you are passing through in your life? Is there a feeling of despair? A sense of hopelessness? Is there’s problem too big for you to handle alone?

Or is it a grief too great to bear? Can you hear Jim’s voice? Sing along with him and let your voice be strong and vibrant. Feel the all powerful strength of a living God as His comfort flows into you. Let Him take hold of your hand..!

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