With over 5,000 hymns to his credit, this songwriter had a much different aspiration for his life. Thank God, His wonderful purpose for this man’s life continues to bless us all.

See if you can guess who this hymn writer is.

He was born in Medford, NJ, in 1856. His father had an excellent voice, and this boy traveled with his dad to his many singing engagements. At a young age, he aspired to following in Dad’s footsteps.

Though he become an ordained minister at age 19, his preaching left something to be desired, and his ability to sing? Well, let’s just say he wasn’t his dad.

None of these setbacks diminished this man’s desire to love and serve the Lord and to preach the Good News. And the Lord honored his commitment.

In 1892 at age 36, he put his pen, faith, and musical talent together and began composing one brilliant song after another – for others to sing. From that time on, he wrote an average of 200 songs a year.

Early in his songwriting career, he penned the dedication to a book as follows:

Let others sing of rights and wrongs,
Sing anything that pleases;
But while they’re singing other songs,
I’ll sing a song for Jesus.

And he wouldn’t accept more than one dollar for a hymn.

Maybe some of these titles can help you identify him:

Higher Ground
No. Not One

I Know He’s Mine
Almost Home
Sweeter Than All
When the Fire Fell

I’ve saved one of my favorites for last.

Along with thousands of other songs, Count Your Blessings was written by Johnson Oatman.

We overlook so many opportunities to thank God for all He has done, is doing, and will continue to do for us. Johnson conveyed reasons to pause and give thanks – for the large and small things, and especially for salvation. Each and every day.

Should we do any less?

“Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever. Let the redeemed of the Lord say so…” (Psm. 107:1-2a, NKJV)

By author eMarie

To leave a comment, please click on the title above, THANKFUL FOR:  COUNTLESS BLESSINGS, and scroll down. Please subscribe, share this post with family and friends, and return next week for another encouraging blog. Thank you and God bless you!  🙂



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Valerie Cullers
1 year ago

Yes, so, so grateful for all He has done for me and my family!
Thank you, eMarie! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Judy Chatfield
Judy Chatfield
1 year ago

Great blog! I am so grateful to COUNT you as one of the blessings in my life!

1 year ago

We have so much to be thankful for! Sometimes we take our eyes off the Lord and forget what He has done for us, but His wonders are never ceasing.

I love the fact that Johnson didn’t give up on his heart for music and serving the Lord. The Lord had a plan, and when the time was right He opened the doors wide for the path He’d prepared all along for Johnson.

1 year ago

Wonderful blog! I am very blessed to have so many great friends, especially you! I’m praying that you and your family will have a blessed Thanksgiving with all of God’s trimmings. ??

1 year ago

God has given each of us a talent. Johnson Oatman used his talent to glorify God and to bless untold number of people and are still and will continue to be a blessing people thru his songs. Whether we consider our talent as unimportant, if we use it to glorify God it becomes a blessing

1 year ago

I think I remember Higher Ground.

1 year ago

Wow. So many songs.:) thank you.

1 year ago

Count Your Many Blessings is at the top of my list for favorite hymnals. This one in particular I remember my father leading my childhood congregation in for worship. He was our songleader. I can still “hear” him singing this beautiful hymnal today. The words still ring true!

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