Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing is one of my absolute favorite hymns. Written in 1758 by Robert Robinson when he was only 23. As the story goes Robinson’s father died when he was young. His mother, barely able to make ends meet, worked most of the time and so Robinson was left to more or less raise himself. By his late teens Robinson had a number of enemies and number of troubles. However it was at this time in his life that he began to consider his own mortality and the person he was becoming. He turned to seek Christ at the age of 20 and soon penned the words of Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing. Within the words themselves, we sense the Robinson’s internal struggle, and perhaps our own….
Come Thou Fount of every blessing, tune my heart to sing Thy grace. Streams of mercy, never ceasing, call for song of loudest praise. Teach me ever to adore Thee. May I still Thy goodness prove. While the hope of endless glory fills my heart with joy and love.
Here I raise my Ebenezer, hither by Thy help I’ve come. And I hope by Thy good pleasure safely to arrive at home. Jesus sought me when a stranger, wandering from the fold of God. He to rescue me from danger interposed His precious blood.
O to grace how great a debtor, daily I’m constrained to be! Let Thy goodness like a fetter bind my wandering heart to Thee. Never let me wander from Thee. Never leave the God I love. Here’s my heart, O take and seal it, seal it for Thy courts above.
We, like Robinson, struggle at times in our walk and in closeness to God. And when that closeness isn’t there, we know that it’s not God who has distanced Himself from us.
The story continues that soon after writing Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing, Robinson walked away from the Lord. Fast forward 16 years. He is now 39 years old. He has spent the last years just getting by: gambling, drinking, living from one place to the next, no God, no faith, no purpose in life – no life – just existence. Robinson steps onto a stage in England. Half hung-over, depressed, a shell of the man he once was. A woman in the stagecoach with him recognizes how down he is. The story goes that she says to him, “There is a song that we sing at church from time to time that gives me great hope and cheers me up, might I share the words with you?” And after Robinson concedes to allow the woman to share, she begins to sing him Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing….
After the woman stops singing, Robinson, tears in his eyes, replies, “Madam, I am the poor, unhappy man who wrote that hymn many years ago, and I would give a thousand worlds to feel now what I felt then.” The moment served as a defining one, a turning point in Robinson’s life, in which he recommitted himself once again to God.
Here’s my heart, O take and seal it, seal it for Thy courts above.
Glory to God!