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
Now Sings My Soul, New Songs for the Lord by: Linda Bonney Olin: http://amzn.to/2DQ6gUy
Here are my new projects:
Choice Hymns of the Faith 1945 http://amzn.to/2Dx97nA
J S Bach Riemenschneider 371 Harmonized Chorales http://amzn.to/2DSy5f9
Dictionary of Hymnology: http://amzn.to/2BxPabk
Text by: Ira B Wilson
Tune by: George S Schuler
1 Out in the highways and byways of life,
Many are weary and sad;
Carry the sunshine where darkness is rife,
Making the sorrowing glad.
Make me a blessing, make me a blessing,
Out of my life may Jesus shine;
Make me a blessing, O Savior, I pray,
Make me a blessing to someone today.
2 Tell the sweet story of Christ and His love,
Tell of His pow’r to forgive;
Others will trust Him if only you prove
True, every moment you live. (Refrain)
3 Give as ’twas given to you in you need,
Love as the Master loved you;
Be to the helpless a helper indeed,
Unto your mission be true. (Refrain)
“I don’t remember writing the lyrics to that song.” Even up until the end of his life, Mr. Wilson did not remember writing this hymn. However his good friend George Shuler did. They were roommates at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, IL and in 1909 they wrote this hymn together; Mr. Wilson writing the text and Mr. Shuler writing the melody. Initially, no publisher accepted the hymn but Shuler printed 1000 copies and distributed them. The music director for the International Sunday School Convention received a copy and immediately started to use it. Soon, finding a publisher was no longer a problem. It continues to be included in new hymnals today.
But what does it mean, this thing called “blessing?” We use the word so loosely and have no real understanding of its power. We even call on God’s blessing for something as trivial as a sneeze. The root word in Hebrew for bless is barak, which means to bend your knee or to kneel. So to bless someone is to kneel before them and give them honor.
All too often we associated being blessed with material success or comfort. We feel blessed if we have a new car, a big house, and healthy children. But when you consider what Jesus had to say about those who are blessed in the Sermon on the Mount, we get a very different picture.
3 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 4 Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted. 5 Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. 6 Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled. 7 Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. 8 Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God. 9 Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God. 10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you. 13 Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savior, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. 14 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. 15 Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
So we are blessed when we are poor in spirit, mourn, meek, hungry, persecuted, and reviled. This hardly sounds like a prosperous life! But rather, we are called to let the blessing we receive from of all of these hardships so shine through us, that even in the midst of all of life’s heartaches, these difficulties are seen by others as a blessing to us. In this our Father in heaven is glorified.
This hymn calls us to be a blessing to those we meet on the highways and the byways of our lives. Not to make their lives easier, but rather the light which is within us, from the risen Savior, will lead them to a fuller understanding of the “sweet story of Jesus.” The blessing we gain from our suffering is a clearer knowledge of our Father’s presence, even in our most dire circumstances. He will never leave us or forsake us and it is our loss to not see this not His loss that we are blind.
Many of us eagerly seek to be blessed by God and others, but the greater good is to seek to bless those around us.
The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make His face shine upon you, and be gracious to you; the LORD lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace. So they shall put My name on the children of Israel, and I will bless them.