Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Widow's Story: Annie S. Hawks

Have you ever heard the old hymn, "I Need Thee Every Hour?" It's a lovely prayer that pleads for Christ's presence and admits our weakness and humility.

Would you believe it was written by a mother of three young children in the 1800's? Here's a bit of her account from "101 More Hymn Stories," by Kenneth W. Osbeck, Kregel Publications, C.1985. page 133.  :
One day as a young wife and mother of 37 years of age, I was busy with my regular household tasks during a bright June morning, in 1872. Suddenly, I became filled with the sense of nearness to the Master, and I began to wonder how anyone could ever live without Him, either in joy or in pain. Then the words were ushered into my mind and these thoughts took full possession of me--"I need Thee every hour . . ."
When Annie showed her pastor what she wrote he put the words to music. Within the first year it was published at a Sunday School convention, and then put into a hymnbook, and then used in the evangelistic campaigns of D.L. Moody and Ira Sankey in both the US and Great Britain. But sixteen years after writing this hymn, Annie Hawks was widowed and understood her hymn in a whole new way.
I did not understand at first why this hymn had touched the great throbbing heart of humanity. It was not until long years after, when the shadow fell over my way, the shadow of a great loss, that I understood something of the comforting power of words which I had been permitted to give out to others . . . .
I love the fact that women have contributed such blessing and vitality to the church of Christ, and widows in particular! God has each of us here for a purpose! Today your words might be the ones to spread through the US and Great Britain and back again to comfort your own heart. Go for it, girlfriend!
What is God telling you today?



  1. Thank you for sharing this uplifting story...and the video...I am challenged to find something useful to do with life.

  2. That's a beautiful old song.Without God,where would I be?

  3. I love this song. I need Him every hour, every minute, every second of my day. Thank you Annie Hawks. Thank You Jesus!

  4. I love it too, Carol. I'm so glad you found it here.

  5. Can you please cite your sources for your quotes of Annie S. Hawks? I would like to do further reading on her. Thanks so much.

  6. Hi Mary, I'm so glad you asked, and alarmed I hadn't cited it! The quotes and info are from a book I own called "101 More Hymn Stories," by Kenneth W. Osbeck, Kregel Publications, C.1985. page 133.


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