Hymn Challenge #11: Great is Thy Faithfulness
Words Written by: Thomas O. Chisholm
b. July 29, 1866; d. February 29, 1960
Music Written by: William M. Runyan
b. January 21, 1870; d. July 29, 1957
This is another hymn that was done by two people--Thomas O. Chisholm wrote the words to this hymn, and William M. Runyan wrote the music. Mr. Chisholm was born in Franklin, Kentucky. He grew up there and became at teacher at age 16. Five years later, he switched professions and became an editor for the local newspaper called "The Franklin Favorite." He accepted Christ when he was 27 years old and eventually became a Methodist minister in 1903 in Kentucky. He was also a poet and wrote over 1,200 poems. Many of them were published and many others were set to music. At one point, he also worked in insurance. Mr. Chisholm suffered from many illnesses thus his employment was up and down and forever changing. He later moved to Indiana and then New Jersey where he died in 1960.
Mr. Runyan was a friend of Mr. Chisholm's. Mr. Chisholm sent several of his poems to Mr. Runyan who was deeply moved by the words of this hymn. He prayed for God's guidance in writing the music to these wonderful words. Later this hymn became the unofficial theme song for Moody Bible Institute.
The words to this hymn are certainly worth reading before we begin:
"Great is Thy faithfulness, O God, my Father,
There is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions they fail not;
As Thou hast been, Thou forever wilt be.
Summer and winter and springtime and harvest,
Sun, moon and stars in their courses above;
Join with all nature in manifold witness
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love.
Pardon for sin And a peace that endureth,
Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide;
Strength for today And bright hope for tomorrow
Blessings all mine, With ten thousand beside.
Great is Thy faithfulness
Great is Thy faithfulness
Morning by morning new mercies I see
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me."
I love looking at the words of this hymn. It shows so many of God's attributes. Concentrating on His attributes at anytime of the day can keep us grounded and focused on Him instead of our daily circumstances. But what is faithfulness? How is God faithful? Dictionary.com describes "faithful" as "being true to one's word, promises, vows; constant; reliable; trusted; believed." Well, God is ALL of those things and more! Let's look at some of His attributes we see in this hymn:
God is Faithful and Loving
Exodus 34:6 "The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness,"
Lamentations 3:22-23 "Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness."
Deuteronomy 7:9a "Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; He is the faithful God,"
Psalm 36:5 "Your love, Lord, reaches to the heavens, Your faithfulness to the skies."
He is our Father
Psalm 89:26 ". . . You are my Father, my God, the Rock my Savior."
John 20:17 ". . . I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God."
Ephesians 4:6 ". . . one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all."
God is Never-changing
Hebrews 13:8 "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever."
James 1:17 "Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows."
He is Compassionate
2 Corinthians 1:3 "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort,"
He is the Beginning and the End
Revelation 22:13 "I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End."
He is Merciful
Deuteronomy 4:31a "For the LORD your God is a merciful God . . ."
Luke 6:36 "Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful."
He is our Guide
Psalm 48:14 "For this God is our God for ever and ever; He will be our guide even to the end."
He Gives Peace and Strength
Psalm 46:1 "God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble."
Psalm 91:4 “He will cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you will find refuge; His faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.”
1 Corinthians 14:33 "For God is not a God of disorder but of peace."
1 Thessalonians 5:23a "May God Himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through."
Our precious and loving Father is faithful all of the time! That is so comforting to know that in any difficulty we face, we can completely trust that He is there, and He is our constant shield (see Psalm 91:4 above). Even when things in our lives seem rough or we are walking through a difficulty, we can lean on Him and know that He is faithful in all situations. How will you choose to praise God for who He is instead of dwelling on your current circumstances? How about singing this hymn when things seem difficult? I know this is one hymn that I have every verse committed to memory. I can be reminded through this hymn that He IS faithful, He is my shield, my Father, my guide, my strength, etc. Will you commit this hymn to memory so that at any time you can remember who He is and how He loves you and is faithful in all He does?
Below you will find the sheet music to "Great is Thy Faithfulness." Also, be sure to check out the link I have below for you today.
For my 6x6 page today, I used the Lamentations verse from above which is also the verse used in the hymn. The stamp image of the verse comes from the ODBD Scripture Collection 1 set. I also pulled out some of my very old Deluxe Designs chipboard, painted it, and added it to the page. I wish they were still in business because I loved their chipboard!
Stamps: Our Daily Bread Designs Scripture Collection 1
Stamp Ink: SU Garden Green, ColorBox Fluid Chalk chestnut roan
Embellishments: Prima Miss Kate flower, Zva Creative jewel flourish, Recollections leaves, white leaf from Wild Orchid Crafts, Deluxe Designs chipboard painted with Adirondack Dabber lettuce, sewing machine
I will be singing this hymn this week. How about you? May you know just how much He loves you and that He is faithful in ALL He does! Remember to use Keyword HSCRC12 when posting your creations in any online galleries. Also, please leave a link to your creation here using Inlinkz! To see all of the information regarding this challenge and the previous studies, please see this post here. Blessings to each of you!