Sunday, January 13, 2013
Great Is Thy Faithfulness
"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." Lamentations 3:22-23
I guess you might say that the song posted above, Great Is Thy Faithfulness, sung by Chris Rice, is my theme song. Of all the Christian songs that I love, whether they are hymns, contemporary, or Southern Gospel music, this song is at the top of my list. It has powerful depth and meaning to me.
Almost two years ago, when the Lord (and others) began prompting me to do a bit of inspirational writing via a blog, I had no doubt that Great Is Thy Faithfulness would be the name of the blog. My experiences throughout life bear witness to the fact that God has been more than faithful to me in every way, even during those times when I have not always been one hundred percent faithful to Him. So, I gave my blog its' title out of gratitude, and as my own personal testimony of God's constant faithfulness in my life. The message of this song is powerfully uplifting to me. It enables me to live with a spirit of grateful praise each day, no matter what type of circumstances may surround me.
I want to briefly introduce you to the writer of this song. Thomas O. Chisholm, was born July 29, 1866 in a crude log cabin in Franklin, Kentucky. From his humble beginning and without the benefit of a high school or advanced education, he somehow began his career as a school teacher at the age of sixteen in the same country school where he had received his elementary school training. After accepting Jesus Christ as his Savior, he became editor of The Pentecostal Herald and was later ordained as a Methodist minister. Throughout his long lifetime, Mr. Chisholm wrote more than twelve hundred sacred poems, many of which have since become prominent hymn texts.
While many enduring hymns are born out of a particular dramatic experience, Great Is Thy Faithfulness was simply the result of Mr. Chisholm's "morning by morning" realization of God's personal faithfulness in his life. Shortly before his death on February 29, 1960, Thomas Obediah Chisholm wrote:
"My income has never been large at any time due to impaired health in the earlier years which has followed me on until now. But I must not fail to record here the unfailing faithfulness of a covenant keeping God and that He has given me many wonderful displays of His providing care which have filled me with astonishing gratefulness."
What a wonderful background story of a man who obviously thought about God's faithfulness to him. Furthermore, down through the ages, countless numbers of people have been extremely blessed to hear his expression of gratefulness through the words of the song.
How about you? Have you thought about God's faithfulness to you recently? Have you thanked Him and expressed your gratefulness for His blessings upon you and your family? I can assure you, that if you but look, you will see clear evidence of His faithfulness surrounding you at all times. And, it is GREAT!!
PRAYER: Father God, thank You for Your faithfulness. You give us strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow. You are faithful to us not just every now and then, but all the times--24/7. You do not change, nor do Your compassions for us change. For this we cannot help but sing, "Great Is Thy Faithfulness." Bless each person reading these words, composed by human hands, but with a heart that desires for others to know You in a real and personal way. Give each one Your joy, love and compassion today. This I pray in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.
Information on Thomas O. Chisholm taken from "Amazing Grace-366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions." Kenneth W. Osbeck
Scripture: New International Version