take my life — hymn study part lll

Many of the hymns we sing were written after certain things happened in the lives of the authors, and many of the authors documented it, so we can learn about it. Today, we are going to learn about a story of consecration and dedication. We learned about Frances Ridley Havergal’s  life earlier this week — now let’s learn about this hymn she wrote, and how it affected her life.

Frances Havergal wrote to a friend:
“Perhaps you will be interested to know the origin of the Consecration hymn ‘Take my life.’ I went for a little visit of five days [to Areley House]. There were ten persons in the house, some unconverted and long prayed for, some converted, but not rejoicing Christians. He gave me the prayer ‘Lord, give me all in this house!’ And He just did! Before I left the house everyone had got a blessing. The last night of my visit after I had retired, the governess asked me to go to the two daughters. They were crying, and then and there both of them trusted and rejoiced; it was nearly midnight. I was too happy to sleep, and passed most of the night in praise and renewal of my own consecration; and these little couplets formed themselves, and chimed in my heart one after another till they finished with ‘Ever, ONLY, ALL for Thee!'”

She made this song her life’s anthem, constantly finding new ways to dedicate herself and all she was to Christ. She called this song her “Consecration Hymn”, and had copies made of it, which she would hand out to others. She always asked that if someone truly meant it, they would sign their name at the bottom of the hymn when alone on their knees before God.

In August, 1878, she wrote to a friend: “The Lord has shown me another little step, and of course I have taken it with extreme delight. ‘Take my silver and my gold,’ now means shipping off all my ornaments to the Church Missionary House (including a jewel cabinet that is really fit for a countess), where all will be accepted and disposed of for me. I retain a brooch or two for daily wear, which are memorials of my dear parents, also a locket containing a portrait of my dear niece in Heaven, my Evelyn, and her two rings; but these I redeem, so that the whole value goes to the Church Missionary Society. Nearly fifty articles are being packed up. I don’t think I ever packed a box with such pleasure.”

She had been trained as a concert soloist, but one day the Lord convicted her using the line in the hymn, “Take my voice and let me sing, only always for my King.” She had an unusually pleasant voice, and her talent could have brought her much fame. However, she determined to only sing for her Lord, wherever she sang, and to spread the gospel through her singing.

How can you consecrate your life to the King today?


I will be posting some of each study on this blog…..if you are interested in joining this study with me, here’s what you need to do:

If you are a reader who is not subscribed to the blog and you want to participate, enter your email address in the sidebar on the right.

Once you are subscribed, send an email to hymnhistorystudies@gmail.com and let me know that you want to participate.(If you are a current subscriber just send me an email stating you’d like to join in)

Once you have emailed me, you will be sent an email three times a week, filled with ideas and inspiration for studying each hymn. You can easily learn about each hymn by simply reading what I post on this blog, but the email will contain more information, more lessons not posted here, and some (hopefully) fun hands-on activities. If the study has already started — no problem! I will happily send you all the emails that have been sent to date, and you can look over them and play catch up.

And, to celebrate the first such study, there will be a fun give-away at the end of these first three weeks…..which I will have more details about later =)

If you know others who would enjoy participating in this study, feel free to invite them along for the ride too. The more the merrier, right?

Bless your friends by sharing!
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What are your thoughts?