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Have Thine Own Way

Have Thine own way, Lord! Have Thine own way!
Thou art the Potter, I am the clay.
Mold me and make me after Thy will,
While I am waiting, yielded and still.

Have Thine own way, Lord! Have Thine own way!
Search me and try me, Master, today!
Whiter than snow, Lord, wash me just now,
As in Thy presence humbly I bow.

Have Thine own way, Lord! Have Thine own way!
Wounded and weary, help me, I pray!
Power, all power, surely is Thine!
Touch me and heal me, Savior divine.

Have Thine own way, Lord! Have Thine own way!
Hold o'er my being absolute sway!
Fill with Thy Spirit 'till all shall see
Christ only, always, living in me.

Adelaide A. Pollard wrote the lyrics of this beloved hymn. She was named Sarah when she was born in Bloomfield, Iowa on November 27, 1862. However, she didn't like her given name, and adopted the name "Adelaide" instead.

After training in the Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, she taught in several girls' schools. She eventually became a Bible teacher, evangelist and healer. She was herself healed of diabetes through prayers of faith.

This was through a simple prayer by an elderly woman during a prayer meeting that inspired Adelaide to write this hymn of consecration in 1902. In those moments of her life, Adelaide was going through a time of distress. Regardless of her best efforts, she could not raise the funds that she needed to go as a missionary to Africa. "Why?" asked the forty-year-old woman.

It was at this time of discouragement that she attended a little prayer meeting. She was impressed by an elderly woman's prayer, who did not pray for blessings or things, but simply petitioned God for an understanding of His will in life: "It's all right, Lord. It doesn't matter what You bring into our lives, just have Your own way with us." That brought great comfort and encouragement to Adelaide's heart.

Upon returning home that same evening, Miss Pollard meditated on the story of the potter, found in Jeremiah 18:3-4:

Then I went down to the potter's house, and there he was, making something at the wheel. And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter; so he made it again into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to make.

Before retiring to bed that evening, Adelaide completed writing all four stanzas of this hymn as it is sung today.

During the years that she was unable to go to Africa, she taught at the Christian and Missionary Alliance school in New York. Shortly before World War I, she did go to Africa. The war forced her to retreat to Scotland. After the fighting was over, she returned to the United States. Despite her failing health, she preached in New England. One of her major themes was the Second Coming of Christ.

Adelaide died on December 20, 1934. She was buried in Elmwood Cemetery, Fort Madison, Iowa. She wrote over 100 other songs. Nobody knew for certain just how many she had written because she seldom signed them nor desired credit for herself.

Please view a pictorial presentation of this hymn:
Have Thine Own Way

Compiled On:
17 June 2005