Here are my completed Hymnals:

Presbyterian 1955 Hymnbook: http://amzn.to/2zSRdpL

Episcopal 1940 Hymnal: http://amzn.to/2DEOl1H 

Broadman 1940 Hymnal:  http://amzn.to/2C1WuwK

Lutheran 1941 Hymnal:  http://amzn.to/2zUmYi2

Methodist 1939 Hymnal:  http://amzn.to/2CfJ1Wq

Pilgrim 1935 Hymnal: http://amzn.to/2DDvbJC

Here are my new projects:

Choice Hymns of the Faith 1945 http://amzn.to/2Dx97nA

Now Sings My Soul, New Songs for the Lord by: Linda Bonney Olin:  http://amzn.to/2DQ6gUy

J S Bach Riemenschneider 371 Harmonized Chorales  http://amzn.to/2DSy5f9

By: Charlotte Elliott 3/18/1789 – 9/22/1871

Thy Will Be Done: http://youtu.be/5e6RBO065Ao

St Gabriel: https://youtu.be/0ou5QVN8SMs

Wimbledon: https://youtu.be/BXif_9qyZNg

Es is kein Tag: https://youtu.be/yKONXNUEbUY

Hanford: https://youtu.be/VUDDOYOSBRA

Charlotte Elliott came from a family steeped in the church and faith. Her parents practiced faithful attendance their entire lives, her maternal grandfather was a pastor and her brothers were also clergy. From an early age she had often heard about her sinful nature and her need to resist temptation. She grew up feeling unworthy of God’s grace and fearful of a righteous and judging God. She was told to pray more, study more, and do good deeds all to no affect.

As a young woman in Clapham, England she worked as a portrait artist and a writer of humorous verse. In her early thirties she suffered a debilitating illness which ruined her health. Leaving her very weak and depressed. She moved to Brighton for care and was an invalid. During her convalescence, a well-known Swiss preacher by the name of Cesar Malan came to visit. In the course of their conversation he asked her if she was at peace with God. His question was very prescient. She was struggling greatly with feelings of uselessness and bitterness over her condition. She asked him to leave her immediately.

A few days later she apologized to Malan, explaining she wanted to “clean up her life before becoming a Christian.” Malan told her to just come as she was. She accepted Christ that day. Those words of Dr. Malan stuck with her and several years later came back to us in the form of one of the most famous hymns of all time. It was heard throughout the last half of the twentieth century as the end of nearly every Billy Graham program: “Just As I Am, Without One Plea.”

Charlotte wrote over 150 hymns and after “Just As I Am,” “My God, My Father While I Stray” is her second most popular hymn. However, this story is a bit more complex. It seems she could just not leave it alone. She published three very different versions with a fourth having just one minor variation. All of the versions follow the same theme; how all sorts of different sins, trials, and tribulations are always drawing her away from God but each couplet ends with: “Thy will be done!” You will find some form of this hymn in nearly every hymnal with verses drawn from one or more of the different versions. Below, I have included the three primary versions.

As Dr John Julian wrote:

Though weak and feeble in body, she possessed a strong imagination and a well-cultured and intellectual mind….. Her verse is characterized by tenderness of feeling, plaintive simplicity, deep devotion and perfect rhythm. She sang for those in sickness and sorrow as very few others have ever done.

The original hymn, published in the Appendix to the first edition of the Invalids Hymn Book, 1834, No. 17, as follows:

  1. My God and Father! while I stray
    Far from my home in life’s rough way,
    Oh! teach me from my heart to say,
    ‘Thy will be done!’
  1. Though dark my path, and sad my lot,
    Let me ‘be still,’ and murmur not,
    Or breathe the prayer divinely taught,
    ‘Thy will be done!’
  1. What though in lonely grief I sigh
    For friends beloved, no longer nigh,
    Submissive still would I reply,
    ‘Thy will be done!’
  1. If thou shouldst call me to resign
    What most I prize, it ne’er was mine;
    I only yield thee what was thine;
    ‘Thy will be done!’
  1. Should pining sickness waste away,
    My life in premature decay,
    My Father! still I strive to say,
    ‘Thy will be done!’
  1. If but my fainting heart be blest
    With thy sweet spirit for its guest,
    My God! to thee I leave the rest—
    ‘Thy will be done!’
  1. Renew my will from day to day,
    Blend it with thine, and take away
    All now that makes it hard to say,
    ‘Thy will be done!’
  1. Then when on earth I breathe no more
    The prayer oft mixed with tears before,
    I’ll sing upon a happier shore,
    ‘Thy will be done!”‘

The second form of the hymn appeared in Miss Elliott’s brother’s (H. V. Elliott), Psalms and Hymns, 1835, as follows:

  1. My God my Father, while I stray
    Far from my home, on life’s rough way,
    0 teach me from my heart to say,
    ‘Thy will be done!’
  1. If thou shouldst call me to resign
    What most I prize,—it ne’er was mine;
    I only yield thee what was thine; —
    ‘Thy will be done!’
  1. E’en if again I ne’er should see
    The friend more dear than life to me,
    Ere long we both shall be with thee;—
    ‘Thy will be done!
  1. Should pining sickness waste away
    My life in premature decay,
    My Father, still I strive to say,
    ‘Thy will be done!’
  1. If but my fainting heart be blest
    With thy sweet Spirit for its guest,
    My God, to thee I leave the rest;—
    ‘Thy will be done!’
  1. Renew my will from day to day;
    Blend it with thine, and take away
    All that now makes it hard to say
    ‘Thy will be done!’
  1. Then when on earth I breathe no more
    The prayer oft mix’d with tears before,
    I’ll sing, upon a happier shore,
    ‘Thy will be done!'”

The third form of the hymn was given in Miss Elliott’s Hours of Sorrow, &c, 1836, pp. 130-1, as follows:—

My God and Father! while I stray
Far from my home in life’s rough way,
0! teach me from my heart to say,
‘Thy will be done!’

Though dark my path and sad my lot,
Let me ‘be still’ and murmur not;
Or breathe the prayer divinely taught,
‘Thy will be done!’

What though in lonely grief I sigh
For friends belov’d, no longer nigh,
Submissive still would I reply,
‘Thy will be done!’

Though thou hast call’d me to resign
What most I priz’d, it ne’er was mine:
I have but yielded what was thine;—
‘Thy will be done!’

Should grief or sickness waste away
My life in premature decay;
My Father! still I’ll strive to say,
‘Thy will be done!’

Let but my fainting heart be blest,
With thy sweet Spirit for its guest.
My God! to thee I leave the rest:
‘Thy will be done!’

Renew my will from day to day!
Blend it with thine! and take away
All that now makes it hard to say,
‘Thy will be done!'”

John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)