"Robert Robinson came from a poor family; his father died when Robert was a child and his mother sent him to London to learn barbering when he was a teenager. Instead he fell in with a gang and was involved in vandalism, looting and petty theft. They went to heckle a traveling evangelist, George Whitefield, who was preaching in the town square but Robert encountered the Lord Jesus and eventually accepted him as his Savior. He went on to become a renowned preacher and pastor, as well as a writer of extraordinary hymns and was well known throughout Europe. But late in his life he left the faith. We don't know the reason why, we don't know the circumstances, but the story is told that there came a day late in his life when he was traveling by stage coach, seated next to a woman who was humming the hymn, 'Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing.'

"If nothing else, maybe simply to make conversation, she asked him, 'Sir, do you know this song?'

"Robinson replied, 'Know it? Madam, I am the miserable man who wrote it and I would give a thousand lives to know the joy and peace that I knew then but I've lost it.'

"Mr. Robinson died shortly thereafter.

"'Come thou Fount' is one of my favorite hymns and that story is one of the
saddest—and I am afraid, all-too-familiar—ones that I know."

This hymn also happens to be one of my favorites. The words of the last stanza say: "O to grace how great a debtor / Daily I'm constrained to be / Let that grace, Lord, like a fetter / Bind my wand'ring heart to Thee / Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it / Prone to leave the God I love / Take my heart, O take and seal It / Seal it from Thy courts above."

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