Serenading Jesus with this heartfelt song
This hymn was originally titled “The Call”, and had it remained that way, it would still be heart-melting. It’s from ancient times, Englishman George Herbert wrote it in the 17th century, but it feels relevant to the present because the call never really ceases. It was published posthumously in Herbert’s The Temple (1633). Herbert’s “Come, My Way, My Truth, My Life” is a thing of beauty that never fades. Reading it is akin to reading an unabashed love letter from a poet to Jesus. Herbert was given the title “One of the foremost British devotional lyricists” and it’s obvious why here; It is deceivingly simple and yet it’s a very profound expression of what Jesus is, how Jesus manifested divine love in his work on earth, and a tender homecoming. Herbert captured the great mysteries of Christian devotion in pure verses which resonated then as well as in the present.
The title “Come, My Way, My Truth, My Life” came about when Methodist movement leaders John and Charles Wesley published 41 of George Herbert’s hymns in their Hymns and Sacred Poems (1739). The Wesleys made revisions (not limited to titles) for most of Herbert’s hymns which they included in the Methodist movement’s hymnal. They converted the meter for the verses as well in their hymnals to 188.8.131.52. The other meter for this hymn is 184.108.40.206.
The hymn setting for “Come, My Way, My Truth, My Life” is the 20th century’s chief figure in the realm of English music Ralph Vaughan Williams’ composition for these lyrics. He published it in his Five Mystical Songs (1911) and for sure you’ll agree this hymn has a mystical quality that deeply moves the listener. Williams originally intended this tender melody for solo singing but its rhythm is quite simple for a congregational performance as well.