2 Dec 2017
A Lengthy Journey of Love
As it is convene so shall it be that the “necessary end will come when it will come.”
The story of Rev-John-Fawcett is compelling-as-uplifting and “Blest Be The Tie That Binds” is a signature hymn that cannot be forged-or-undone. Born January-6-1740 in Yorkshire-England he died July-25-1817, but in between this mystery of faith lies the soul-of-a-man chosen by God to lead. We are not thinking of a sudden-departure but prepare-ourselves should it come where we Re-align ourselves with John-Fawcett.
Born into a poor family-in-Yorkshire, he was orphaned at age-12. In order to survive he accepted an apprenticeship as a tailor. While in his teens, he heard the great George-Whitfield-preach and became-a-Christian and active in the Baptist-church often being asked to speak. At age-25, newly married with his wife Mary, he was invited to serve at Carter-Lane as Pastor a small-church. The congregation was poor and had little to-pay, much of his salary came in food-produce. As his family grew they found-it-difficult to survive. He learned that the Pastor of a large Baptist-church in London was retiring. Interested, he applied and was given the charge as their-new-Pastor at a much-larger-salary. He and Mary packed their belongings and prepared-to-move. But then, Mary didn’t think that she could-leave the people whom they had grown-to-love, so did he; thus, they unpacked-the-wagon and declined the London-offer.
That very Sunday Rev. Fawcett who had written-many-hymns penned-these-words, not as a hymn but part of a sermon, “Blest-Be-The-Tie-That-Binds”, conveying he and Mary's sentiments to his poor but loving-congregation. Until his death 54 years later, there he remained. Why could he not leave-Carter-Lane...Where there was No great-salary...No retirement-package.
He was overcome by the thought-of-leaving the congregation he-loved, thereby cancelling-his-plans. Rev Fawcett's loyalty and compassion swells over his life and earned the respect-that-comes through-devotion, something I hope that I-have-passed on to the ACW.
Like Fawcett, there is an offer-on-the-table, not in this-country, serious-consideration is being given. New-year dawns. Moments like these are led by the Holy-Spirit. Mine belongs to the church and the last 20-years the ACW with never regrets but in the twilight of my-life our ministry must end where-it-began, solidly planted in the roots of the Anglican-faith; spreading-the-Gospel to those in need.
Fawcett's hymn is a claim to my intentions, whose words I now share in full text:
Blest be the tie that binds
Is like to that above.
Before our Father’s throne
Our comforts-and our cares.
We share each other’s woes,
The sympathizing tear.
From sorrow, toil and pain,
Through all eternity.
When we-asunder part,
And hope-to-meet again.
Our hope lies in these words.