Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing, part 1

This is another favourite hymn of mine. Most of us know it, but you may not know the story behind it. It was written by Robert Robinson who was born in 1735. At the age of 8 his father died. His mother sent him away to become an apprentice to a barber. And in his teenage years he became reckless in his drinking and gambling. One person writes that he “associated with a notorious gang of hoodlums and lived a debauched life”. At the age of 17, he and his friends in a drunken stupor attended an evangelistic event where George Whitefield was preaching to make fun of the event. But instead he walked away from it being convicted by what he heard. And for three years that sermon haunted him. And so at the age of 20, he gave his life to Christ. And then he became a minister, in a Baptist church, then in a Methodist church, and later in other denominations. And he wrote this hymn, Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing.
And that’s why his lyrics are autobiographical. He writes,
Jesus sought me when a stranger,
Wandering from the fold of God;
He, to rescue me from danger,
Interposed His precious blood;

But he always had an awareness of his sinful nature. That’s why he also wrote:
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
And he actually did end up lapsing and leaving the ministry. But the story goes, one day while traveling in a stage coach, his only companion was a woman who kept talking about how much this particular hymn had encouraged her, not knowing that she was talking to its author. And try as he might, Robinson couldn’t get her to change the subject, until he couldn’t stand it any longer and broke down in tears and said: “Madam, I am the poor unhappy man who composed that hymn, many years ago. And I would give a thousand worlds, if I had them, to enjoy the feelings I then had!”
Gently, the woman replied, “Sir, the ‘streams of mercy’ are still flowing.” He was deeply touched by that. As a result of the encounter he repented. His fellowship with the Lord was restored through the ministry of his own hymn, and a Christian’s willing witness.

Let us be encouraged. God has indeed redeemed us, but he continues to redeem us. For we are prone to wander but it’s not us, but him who relentlessly pursues us. His streams of mercy are still flowing.

Here are two renditions(solo and choir). The choir’s version with the orchestra (listen for the french horns!) is hauntingly beautiful.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g3w9nvXuVnk
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nq-Q22Pf1W8

Come, Thou Fount of every blessing,
Tune my heart to sing Thy grace;
Streams of mercy, never ceasing,
Call for songs of loudest praise.
Teach me some melodious sonnet,
Sung by flaming tongues above.
Praise the mount! I’m fixed upon it,
Mount of Thy redeeming love.

Sorrowing I shall be in spirit,
Till released from flesh and sin,
Yet from what I do inherit,
Here Thy praises I’ll begin;
Here I raise my Ebenezer;
Here by Thy great 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;
How His kindness yet pursues me
Mortal tongue can never tell,
Clothed in flesh, till death shall loose me
I cannot proclaim it well.

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.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here’s my heart, O take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above.

O that day when freed from sinning,
I shall see Thy lovely face;
Clothed then in blood washed linen
How I’ll sing Thy sovereign grace;
Come, my Lord, no longer tarry,
Take my ransomed soul away;
Send thine angels now to carry
Me to realms of endless day.

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