1. Does Jesus care When my heart is pained Too deeply for mirth and song; As the burdens press And the cares distress, And the way grows weary and long?
Chorus: O yes, He cares I know He cares! His heart is touched with my grief; When the days are weary, The long nights dreary, I know my Saviour cares.
2.Does Jesus care When my way is dark With a nameless dread and fear? As the daylight fades Into deep night shades, Does He care enough to be near?
3.Does Jesus care When I've said good-bye To the dearest on earth to me, And my sad heart aches Till it nearly breaks Is it aught to Him? Does He care?
Frank Graeff (1860-1919) received a special call from God from a very early age, to minister to younger people and especially children. Serving in the Methodist church as an ordained minister, he became well-known for his story-telling and also for writing articles for children in different publications. Throughout his life, it is believed he wrote more than two hundred sets of hymn lyrics. He also wrote a novel that was quite successful, The Minister’s Twins.
As an individual, Frank Graeff was known for his positive attitude and cheery disposition, so much so that he eventually was given the nick-name “sunshine minister”.
The great lyricist C. Austin Miles, author of the well-known hymn “In The Garden” wrote the following words about Graeff:
“He is a spiritual optimist, a great friend of children; his bright sun-shinning disposition attracts him not only to children, but to all with whom he comers in contact. He has a holy magnetism and a child-like faith.”
One would think that an individual with such a cheery disposition had a problem-free life and had it all together. In Graeff’s case, the contrary was actually true. The reason for his being such a cheerful, positive, and encouraging person was not because he had no problems, but he displayed these attitudes in spite of his problems – and his problems were severe many times.
At the time when this text was written, Frank Graeff was experiencing serious physical issues, and he began to doubt the reality of God’s presence in his suffering.
Looking for encouragement and strength in Scripture, the author stumbled upon 1 Peter 5:7 “Cast all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you”. He was especially touched by the words “He cares for you” and found encouragement and assurance in these words. Eventually, the text of the hymn was inspired by the words found in this verse.
The text of the hymn, the circumstances in which it was written, and of course the Biblical text from which it was inspired should be a great source of encouragement for believers everywhere. The song and its story should be a comforting reminder that worry and doubt will sometimes be part of our walk with Christ, but in the midst of worry and doubt, Christ is near us, ready to help. He really does care about us. When we come to the same realization as the author did, we can confidently sing with him: “O yes, He cares, I know He cares!”