This week's hymn is probably my favorite and its words always speak to me, especially in challenging times. The author, Thomas Chisholm, was born in 1866 in the state of Kentucky. While he wrote over 1200 hymns, the one we remember the most is "Great Is Thy Faithfulness." Chisholm did not write this because something great and miraculous had taken place in his life. No, he wrote it because over his entire life he had learned to see the greatness of God. At the age of 75, he wrote: "My income has not been large at any time due to impaired health in the earlier years which has followed me on until now. Although 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, for which I am filled with astonishing gratefulness." Popular gospel singer and songwriter Beverley Shea first introduced it to audiences in Great Britain in the Billy Graham Crusades in 1954. The tune is composed by William M. Runyan (1870-1957), with scripture reference from the Bible's Lamentations 3:22-23 - "Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail."
(1) 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 will be.
Refrain: 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!
(2) 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. Refrain
(3) 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! Refrain