While we were holding meetings in Boston, in 1876, Mr. Moody was entertained by one of the leading lawyers of the city, who frequently before the meetings would ask what solo I had selected. If I had none, he would say: ”Please sing, 'The mistakes of my life have been many'; for one of the greatest mistakes I have ever made was to ignore God in all my affairs. But at last he took away my only child, a beloved son. That led me to the feet of Jesus, and I bowed to kiss the hand that had laid the rod upon me. Then I told the Lord that I would devote my fortune to his service. In keeping with that promise I erected a college for young women, located at Wellesley Lake, near Boston. ”This good man has now passed on to his reward. Shortly before he died Mr. Moody and I purchased a perpetual scholarship in Wellesley College, as a prize to be sought after by the young women of Northfield Seminary.
Written about the year 1871, this hymn was much used and became very popular in our meetings in Great Britain.