Anytime and anywhere know that Jesus’ love is there (Don’na tokidemo, don’na tokidemo)

Author: Junko Takahashi – Tune Don’na Tokidemo

Don’na tokidemo, don’na tokidemo (Kapan pun penderitaan datang)
kurushimini makezu, kujiketewa naranai. (aku tidak akan patah semangat)
Iesu samano, Iesu samano ai o shinjite. (aku percaya pada Yesus)

Don’na tekodemi, don’na tokidemo (Kapan pun penderitaan datang)
shiawaseo nozomi, kujiketewa naranai. (Kami berharap kebahagiaan, bukan berkecil hati)
Iesu samano, Iesu samano ai o shinjite. (aku percaya pada Yesus)

Anytime and anywhere, know that Jesus’s love is there .
When in grief and loss, when in pain, God will strengthen and sustain.
Put your hope in God, trust His holy Word everytime and everywhere.

Anytime and anywhere, know that Jesus’s love is there.
Don’t despair for God is kind. Look for joy and you will find.
Put away your fear, God is very near every time and every where.

Put away your fear… God is very near… Every time and every where…

This song is a Japanese hymn. Rarely have we explored hymns from this part of the world, but here is one that is appropriate to help us in troubled times. When I came across this Japanese song, it touched me and I hope it does to you too. It is called Don’na Tokidemo ~ Anytime & Anywhere.

About the Hymn

This simple hymn text was written by a young Japanese girl who died of cancer at age seven. Junko Takahashi died young, and her faith grew stronger even as she suffered in the hospital. What a testimony this young child has given to a nation where less than 2 percent of the population is Christian! The music is by Shin’ichi Takanami, Associate Professor of Music Education at Kunitachi College of Music in Tokyo.

This hymn was recommended for Sing! A New Creation by Dr. Yasuhiko Yokosaka, a professor of music at Niigata University in Japan. He served on the committee that prepared The Hymnal 21, the fourth Christian hymnal in Japan based on ecumenical efforts (21 stands for the 21st century; the earlier hymnals were published in 1903, 1931, and 1954). Many hymns in The Hymnal 21 have been translated from English into Japanese.

The text encourages us not to fear, but to trust Jesus’ love and God’s steadfast care. The gentle melody, in a tradition as much Western as Eastern, is in the simple style of children’s songs of earlier generations. It reminds us of God’s lovingkindness to generations before us as well as to our own. Like the words “anytime” and “anywhere,” the tune uses parallel phrases that build on each other. Sing at an andante tempo (q = 100), accompanied by guitar or keyboard, with instruments (flute, violin) playing the melody in unison with the singers.

The song is appropriate “anytime and anywhere”—consider having your children learn it and teach the adults during Lent, for a healing service, or for a funeral. Also consider singing one stanza at the beginning and another at the end of prayers of intercession.”

A few comments about struggles in Life

Struggle and storms of life – we have all faced them at one time or another. No one, not even the most religious among us, is immune to them. Sometimes it is health issues, sometimes money issues, work or family problems. Other times it is just life itself – waking up feeling like the minute that your feet hit the floor, the problems are going to flood through the door. You spend your day struggling just to keep your head above water so you can go to bed and get up the next day to do it all over again.

If you are there (or you have been there), you are not the first. The past one year has been on such a period for Enid and I. When hard times come, lines of familiar hymns often leap out at us, catch us unaware, and stick in our throats. At times we cannot sing, we cannot pray. It is then that we need the fellowship of believers more than ever. We need the comfort of knowing that others are singing and praying on our behalf, bringing before God the prayers and songs we cannot sing.

The comfort we get is this, that the Bible is filled with people much like us who struggled with things beyond their control. Jacob spent his life struggling with God. Moses struggled with his leadership role and the people around him. David seemed to have it all, yet he struggled with much (as the Psalms shares with us). Job was hit with loss after loss after loss. He suffered mightily for over 40 chapters and while he never cursed God, he did curse the day he was born. The Apostle Paul struggled and in 1 Timothy, called himself one of the biggest sinners of all time.

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