Find God in the Life of Frances Ridley Havergal

By  Karen O’Connor:

Frances Ridley Havergal

It’s easy to find God in the life of Frances Ridley Havergal, writer of many beloved hymns.

“Frances was a bright but short lived can­dle in Eng­lish hym­no­dy. She was bap­tized by hym­nist John Ca­wood. She was read­ing by age four, and be­gan writ­ing verse at age se­ven. She learned La­tin, Greek and He­brew, and mem­o­rized the Psalms, the book of Isai­ah, and most of the New Test­a­ment.” (From cyberhymnal.org)

Frances’ words and breath were about the love of God and the salvation offered by Jesus Christ. She lived a simple, quiet life, selling all of her jewelry to devote herself to ministry and writing, and taking no apparent interest in anything that was going on in the world except saving souls for Christ.

Her best loved hymns include: “Take My Life and Let it Be,” “Lord, Speak to Me,” and “Who is On the Lord’s Side.”

She is buried next to her father at Astley Church in Astley, England. The inscription on her tomb says it all. “By her writings in prose and verse she being dead yet speaketh.” She also wrote religious tracts and works for children.

Be inspired by this YouTube video of “Take My Life and Let It Be” and you too will surely find God in the life and hymns of Frances Ridley Havergal.

Familiar with a different version? Here’s that one too:

 ©Karen O’Connor. Karen is an author, writing mentor, and frequent contributor to the Finding God Daily blog. Visit Karen on the web at www.karenoconnor.com, on Facebook or follow on Twitter: @karenoconnor  

 

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Finding God by Faith and Not by Sight

By  Karen O’Connor:

walk by faith and not by sight

As I look back on my life, I did just the opposite of what the apostle Paul taught in the Bible.

“For we walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7 New Testament.)

Finding God by faith and not by sight, took me by surprise when I committed my life to Christ at age 42, because I had lived by sight for so long. All my choices and decisions had been based on what I felt, what I noticed, what I heard and saw in the world. And I held my own point of view in high regard.

That is, until the crisis of an unwanted divorced knocked me down. I lay there as still as a stone. I had no resources, no help, no answers–until a counselor friend asked me a disturbing question. “How are you and God getting along?”

What kind of a question is that? I wondered. I hadn’t even thought about God except when I said a mere ‘thank you’ before a meal. But that question would not let go of me. It started a journey that led me to Jesus Christ––his teachings, his promises, his friendship––and to the knowledge that to walk with Christ, is to live by faith, not by sight, in marriage, in parenting, in relating to everyone I encounter, and to ask for His grace when I fail.

I started attending church, enrolled in a Bible study, and made friends with people whose faith-walk I admired. The sermons of Charles Spurgeon, one of the great Christian preachers and writers of the 19th century, led me to a deep and personal relationship with God. Check out his Sermon #677: Faith Versus Sight one of many he preached at the Metropolitan Tabernacle in London.

According to the history of the Metropolitan Tabernacle, Spurgeon (19 June 1834 – 31 January 1892) began preaching in 1853, before he was 20 years old.

“Charles H. Spurgeon pastored the church for 38 years, founding a pastors’ college, an orphanage, a Christian literature society and The Sword and the Trowel magazine. Over 200 new churches were started in the Home Counties alone, and pastored by his students. His printed sermons (still published) fill 62 volumes.”

“During Charles Spurgeon’s ministry tens of thousands were converted to God under the preaching of the Word.”

He once preached to 23,654 people at once– at The Crystal Palace in London.

I hope you will take time to read his Faith Versus Sight message with so many interesting insights.

I also like this quote from author Peter De Vries:

“It takes a lot more faith to live this life without faith than with it.”

Finding God by faith, not by sight is a journey you won’t regret.

©Karen O’Connor. Karen is an author, writing mentor, and frequent contributor to the Finding God Daily blog. Visit Karen on the web at www.karenoconnor.com, on Facebook or follow on Twitter: @karenoconnor

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Find God: the Life and Home of Clive Staples Lewis

By  Karen O’Connor:

Visiting the home of Clive Staples Lewis, otherwise known as C.S. Lewis, was a highlight of my trip to England.

 

C.S. Lewis Home

 “A concentrated mind and a sitting body make for better prayer than a kneeling body and a mind half asleep.” [Letters to Malcolm: Chiefly on Prayer, C.S. Lewis]

Such a quote inspires one to find God in the life of C.S. Lewis.

One of the great highlights of my trip to Great Britain was a visit to the author’s former home known as “The Kilns,” in Headington, Oxford, England. What a thrill it was to visit the very place where Lewis wrote in his own hand his many volumes of fiction, [Chronicles of Narnia,] nonfiction [Mere Christianity; A Grief Observed and others], and essays, among them writings on prayer. He never learned to type, but instead turned over his manuscripts to an assistant.

Touring the house was a blessing it itself—to see the kitchen where he and others prepared food, the study filled with his own books and those of authors he admired, and his bedroom furnished in keeping with his simple life-style.

Clive Staples Lewis (29 November 1898 – 22 November 1963), commonly called C. S. Lewis and known to his friends and family as “Jack,” was a novelist, poet, academic, literary critic, essayist, lay theologian and Christian apologist who was born in Belfast, Ireland and later as an adult moved to England and taught at both Oxford University and Cambridge University.

Lewis had been baptized in the Church of Ireland (part of the Anglican Communion) at birth, but left the faith during his adolescence. The influence of his friend Tolkien and others, inspired him at the age of 32 to return to the Anglican Communion, becoming “a very ordinary layman of the Church of England.” From that time on his faith had a profound effect on his work, and his wartime radio broadcasts on the subject of Christianity reached a broad and loyal audience. Thousands of people over the course of his life and since his death have found God in the life and writings of C.S. Lewis.

Be inspired by–and find God in–this YouTube video C.S Lewis’s lone surviving BBC radio address on prayer.

©Karen O’Connor. Karen is an author, writing mentor, and frequent contributor to the Finding God Daily blog. Visit Karen on the web at www.karenoconnor.com, on Facebook or follow on Twitter: @karenoconnor  

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