You will surely find hope and comfort in Alan Jackson‘s “In The Garden.”
The country superstar has always been very open about his Christian faith. So, it was no longer a surprise when he released his first gospel album, Precious Memories, in 2006. Unlike his previous ones, this album comprises traditional gospel songs – including “In The Garden.”
Although there were no singles released from Precious Memories, it earned Platinum certification by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).
The Song Aims To Bring Hope To Its Listeners
Written by American songwriter C. Austin Miles, “In The Garden” is a hymn penned to bring hope.
“I come to the garden alone while the dew is still on the roses and the voice I hear falling on my ear. The Son of God discloses, and He walks with me. And He talks with me. And He tells me I am his own. And the joy we share as we tarry there. None other has ever known,” it begins.
Dr. Miles is a graduate of the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and the University of Pennsylvania; however, he left his career as a pharmacist in 1892. “It is as a writer of gospel songs I am proud to be known, for in that way I may be of the most use to my master, whom I serve willingly although not as efficiently as is my desire,” Miles said to himself.
One day Dr. Adam Geibel asked Austin Miles to write a hymn that brings hope. Miles then retreated to – according to his granddaughter – “a cold, dreary and leaky basement in New Jersey that didn’t even have a window in it let alone a view of a garden.”
He turned to his Bible and fell open to John, chapter 20, where Mary Magdalene met Jesus after the resurrection. Miles then imagined being on that delightful occasion, seeing things unfold right before his eyes in the garden.
When Miles came back to his senses, he found himself gripping his Bible while his muscles, to what he remembered, were “tense and nerves vibrating.”
“Under the inspiration of this vision, I wrote as quickly as the words could be formed the poem exactly as it had since appeared. That same evening I wrote the music,” he said.
“In the Garden” was first published in 1912. It was then made famous by Billy Sunday Evangelistic Campaigns. Many people all over the world fell in love with this renowned hymn, no wonder why several notable artists have recorded it too.
Elvis Presley recorded a popular version in 1967 for his gospel album How Great Thou Art. Willie Nelson also did in 1976 for his gospel album The Troublemaker. In 1981, The Statler Brothers brought the hymn to the US country chart, peaking at No. 35. Glen Campbell also recorded the hymn in 1989 on his gospel album Favorite Hymns.
Of course, there’s also Alan Jackson. You can listen to his version of “In The Garden” in the video below.