Fanny Crosby was a famous poet and a hymn writer, whose hymns are still sung in congregations all around the globe. Let us have a look at her long fruitful life journey.
Fanny was born in a village in New York to John Crosby. Fanny lost her eyesight within 6 weeks of her birth. The physician, who came to treat her cold and inflammated eyes, gave her a wrong prescription, which resulted in her blindness. On hearing the news that Fanny lost her eyesight, the physician fled from the village.
Fanny joined a blind school. She excelled in her studies and had an outstanding talent for writing poems. She started writing poems at a very early stage and by the age of 23, she was addressing Congress and presidents of her time. She wrote poems for presidents and she had friendship with many chief executives of her time.
Fanny’s wise grandmother taught her to memorize Bible verses and even as a child, Fanny memorized 5 chapters a week and was well versed in the book of Proverbs and Psalms.
Though Fanny was religiously memorizing Bible verses and going to church for years traditionally, she did not get saved until age 31.
Fanny was very successful and famous as a poet and a teacher, but was yet to be saved.
One day, she had a dream, where her friend who appeared to be very sick, asked her, “Fanny, Will you meet in Heaven?” . This made Fanny think and she later accepted Jesus as her Saviour and Lord.
Fanny decided to use her God-given talents for His glory and started writing hymns for God. Some of her remarkable and ever loved hymns are “Blessed Assurance”, “Safe in the Arms of Jesus”, “All the way my saviour leads me”, “Praise Him! Praise Him!
Fanny had written over 9000 hymns, many of which were translated in various languages across the globe. Most of Fanny’s hymns were published with her pen names. She did not pen down the hymns for her own glory, but for the Glory of God.
All her hymns were gospel centric, emphasizing that Salvation is by Grace Alone, through Christ Alone, by Faith Alone and the Eternal Security of all true believers.
Fanny could have amazed huge wealth and fame by pursuing worldly benefits through her talents.
But, she wisely chose to purse Everlasting rewards in Heaven, rather than temporal earthly rewards.
Fanny received only a dollar or two for her awesome hymns from the publishers and she used even that money to share the love of Christ with the unsaved and reaching the poor and needy, in Jesus name. She had to relocate often for her missionary work and did not own a house or property.
God used her hymns mightily to save money. Once, a man gathered a group of people, saying that he is Jesus and that people should come to him. During this gathering a team from Salvation Army were singing one of Fanny’s hymns with the below lines, and are passing through the place where the gathering took place.
“I shall know Him, I shall know him,
By the prints of the nails in his hands”
On hearing these lines, the crowd saw that the man did not have the prints of the nails in his hands and departed. The Christ once came and was crucified for the sins of everyone who believes in Him. The Second Coming of Christ will be with trumpets and chariots as he would return as the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, not an ordinary man.
After her long fruitful life for God, Fanny died at the age of 95, to meet our lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. The students of Hardward University inscribed the below lines from her most famous hymn “Blessed Assurance” in her tomb.
“Born of His Spirit,
Washed in His Blood’,
This is my story!
This is my song!
While it is my true that we get to heaven only by the Grace of God, by believing Him and accepting Jesus as our saviour and not by our own good works, we are also called to Glorify God with our good works in this life.
Sadly, many of us have accepted Jesus as our saviour and have the “Blessed Assurance” of Heaven, but still live unfruitful lives like the people of the world.
Thankfully, God can rewrite our story, if we are willing.
“God will answer you prayers better than you think. Of course, one will not always get exactly what he has asked for....We all have sorrows and disappointments, but one must never forget that, if commended to God, they will issue in good....His own solution is far better than any we could conceive.”
“Rescue the perishing, care for the dying,
Snatch them in pity from sin and the grave;
Weep o'er the erring one, lift up the fallen,
Tell them of Jesus the mighty to save.”
“It seemed intended by the blessed providence of God that I should be blind all my life, and I thank him for the dispensation. If perfect earthly sight were offered me tomorrow I would not accept it. I might not have sung hymns to the praise of God if I had been distracted by the beautiful and interesting things about me.”Fanny Crosby Bio