I want to thank CF4K for a review copy of Fanny Crosby.
As a child, one of my favorite hymns was most certainly Blessed Assurance. I would stand in church (or in the kitchen with my broom) and belt out:
“Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine!
O what a foretaste of glory divine!….
Heir of salvation, purchase of God,
Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood.”
My favorite part of the hymn was always the refrain:
“This is my story, this is my song,
praising my Savior all the day long;
this is my story, this is my song,
praising my Savior all the day long.”
O, how I longed to be that girl… praising my Savior all the day long.
Blessed Assurance was written in 1873 by a remarkably gifted woman named Fanny Crosby (1820-1915). Blind at the age of just six weeks old, Ms. Crosby was able to memorize and recall the Scriptures early in her life. (She was blessed to have a grandmother and later a boarding house matron who helped her accomplish this task.) She had a remarkable feel for poetry, and using her gift for memory, was able to compose poems and hymns quickly without forgetting them.
Fanny Crosby is credited with writing at least 9,000 hymns in the course of her long life. Prior to her decision to use her remarkable gift for the glory of the Lord, Ms. Crosby also wrote many, many poems and secular songs. However, once she decided to follow Christ with her life, Fanny Crosby not only dedicated herself to writing popular hymns, she also spent her life speaking to society’s downtrodden. She was a frequent visitor in the run-down tenements of New York, in prisons and in shelters. In spite of her commitment to the poor, Ms. Crosby was also known worldwide. Among her friends were D.L Moody, Ira Sankey, and President Grover Cleveland. In fact, Fanny Crosby’s songs were frequently used in Moody’s evangelistic campaigns.
I’m excited to let you know that Lucille Travis has written a biography of Fanny Crosby’s life for ages 8-14. Fanny Crosby: The Blind Girl’s Song (Christian Focus Publications, 2013) is an encouraging story of a woman blind from infancy, her use of the Lord’s gifting, and her refusal to allow a disability to rule her life.
Fanny Crosby: The Blind Girl’s Song is the 35th book in the Trailblazers series. (I love, love, love the series and we use them frequently to study Christian history). I appreciate the Gospel focus of the Trailblazers books.
I highly recommend Lucille Travis’ Fanny Crosby: The Blind Girl’s Song. It’s the story of a woman committed to God’s glory, and God’s hand in her life.
This book would coordinate well with studies involving:
Character Traits: Creativity, Joy, Commitment
- God’s gifting (and using it to His glory)
- The development of schools for the blind and braille
- The 1800’s or early 1900’s
- The cholera epidemic in New York City in 1849
- Poetry or hymn studies
- The American Civil War (1861-1865)
- The Second Great Awakening (Evangelical movement in America)
You can find Fanny Crosby: The Blind Girl’s Song at
More Books for 8-12 Year Olds Reviewed at Thinking Kids
- History Lives Christian History Series by Brandon & Mindy Withrow
- Guarding the Treasure: How God’s People Preserve God’s Word by Linda Finlayson
- Tough Questions About the Bible by Joel R. Beeke
- The New Astronomy Book by Danny R. Faulkner
- God’s Special Tent: The Story of the Tabernacle and What Came After by Jean Stapleton
Thinking Kids Book Review Indexes
Thinking Kids Pinterest Book Boards
- Christian Books for Preschoolers
- Christian Books for 4-7 Year Olds
- Christian Books for the Middle Grades
- Christian Books for Middle School
- Christian Books for High School
- Christian Books for Kids’ Devotions
- Christian Books about Parenting
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~ Danika Cooley
Danika Cooley is the author of When Lightning Struck! The Story of Martin Luther (Fortress Press, 2015), Wonderfully Made (CF4K, 2016), and Bible Road Trip. Her work has been featured in internationally-recognized children's magazines over 150 times.