I have sung this wonderful hymn so many times but it wasn’t until recently that I came across the woman who wrote it. Frances Havegal was an English religious poet and hymnwriter. Her two best known hymns are Take My Life and Let it Be and Thy Life for Me, also known as I Gave My Life for Thee.
She was born in an Anglican family and when she was five, When she was five, her father, a clergyman, writer, composer, and hymnwriter moved to the Rectory of St. Nicholas, Worcester. In August, 1850, she entered Mrs. Teed’s school who had a strong influence on her. In the following year Frances declared, “I committed my soul to the Saviour, and earth and heaven seemed brighter from that moment.”
Frances began reading and memorizing the Bible as early as four years old and eventually memorized the Psalms, Isaiah and most of the New Testament. At seven she wrote her first poems. Frances performed frequently as a concert soloist because she had a lovely voice. She also was very accomplished pianist and learned several modern languages as well as Greek and Hebrew. However, in spite of her education, Frances’ simple faith and confidence in her Lord never wavered. She never wrote a line of poetry unless she first prayed over it.
Although she suffered from frail health she didn’t allow it to prevent her from being on fire for Jesus, encouraging many people to turn to Him and others to seek a deeper spiritual walk. She led an active spiritual life. She explained what inspired her to write her hymn, Take My Life And Let It Be. “There were ten persons in the house; some were unconverted and long prayed for, some converted but not rejoicing Christians. [God] gave me the prayer, ‘Lord, give me all in this house.’ And He just did. Before I left the house, everyone had got a blessing. The last night of my visit I was too happy to sleep and passed most of the night in renewal of my consecration, and those little couplets formed themselves and chimed in my heart one after another till they finished with “ever only, ALL FOR THEE!”
The hymn, “Take My Life And Let It Be,” is sung all over the world, in churches and in homes. It is more than a hymn. It is a prayer. Like Frances, we should be on fire for Jesus and encourage many to turn to Him and have a deeper spiritual walk. When it comes to praying for the salvation of others whether they are in our homes, schools, universities, offices, communities or even our churches, God will always answer those prayers.
“Take My Life and Let it Be”
Take my life and let it be
Consecrated, Lord, to Thee.
Take my moments and my days,
Let them flow in endless praise.
Take my hands and let them move
At the impulse of Thy love.
Take my feet and let them be
Swift and beautiful for Thee.
Take my voice and let me sing,
Always, only for my King.
Take my lips and let them be
Filled with messages from Thee.
Take my silver and my gold,
Not a mite would I withhold.
Take my intellect and use
Every pow’r as Thou shalt choose.
Take my will and make it Thine,
It shall be no longer mine.
Take my heart, it is Thine own,
It shall be Thy royal throne.
Take my love, my Lord, I pour
At Thy feet its treasure store.
Take myself and I will be
Ever, only, all for Thee.