Great Is thy Faithfulness Thomas Obediah Chisholm was born in a log cabin in Franklin, Kentucky in 1866. He received his education in a little country schoolhouse, and at age 16 began teaching at the same school. He became a Christian at age 27, and with no college or seminary training was ordained to the Methodist ministry at age 36. Chisholm served as a Methodist minister for a year, but ill health made it impossible for him to continue. He moved to Vineland, New Jersey, where he opened an insurance office.
Chisholm wrote hundreds of poems during his lifetime. In 1923, he was inspired by Lamentations 3:22-23 to write the text for the hymn, “Great is thy Faithfulness.” Those verses are as follows, “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”
He suffered ill health most of his adult life and therefore had a smaller than average income. Of this circumstance he said, “God has given me many wonderful displays of his providing care, which have filled me with astonishing gratefulness.”
Chisholm sent the words to one of his poems, “Great Is thy Faithfulness” to his friend, William Runyan, and Runyan wrote a musical setting.
Nearer, My God, to Thee
Sarah Flower Adams was a young woman of 43 when she died in 1848, and her home was at Harlow in the English county of Essex. Her hymns are more widely used in America than elsewhere, particularly amongst Unitarians.
Nearer, My God, to Thee is based on Jacob’s dream (Gen. 28:12) in which the ladder, set up on earth, reaches to heaven, a vision which the writer deftly weaves into her hymn.
I need The every hour Annie Sherwood Hawks (May 28, 1836 – January 3, 1918) was an American poet and gospel … Lowry, himself a hymn-writer, encouraged Hawks to compose her own hymns. In 1868 … Lowry, who wrote the music, went on to say: “I Need Thee Every Hour” was written by Mrs. Annie S. Hawks, in 1872, in Brooklyn, New York.