Just as I am

Just as I am

Posted on 15th May 2020 under The Rectory Bulletin | Hymn Stories


In 1821 Charlotte Elliott was stricken with a severe sickness, which would affect her life until she died some five decades later. Although she was popular in the society circles of the day, she was living with her parents in Clapham and was separated from her companions.

That too was the year when César Malan travelled from Geneva to visit her father. He was a Swiss minister, but was no stranger to the shores of Britain. Aflame with a desire to bring people to Christ, he would often speak to them about faith and so it was that he asked Charlotte whether she was at peace with God. Affronted, she refused to answer but the question lingered.

A few days passed, and she sought out Dr Malan in order to apologise and to tell him that she wanted to cleanse her life before she came to Christ and become a Christian. No, the Genevan replied “come just as you are”. And so she did.

The words evidently stuck and when she was permanently invalided, she wrote “Just as I am”. Eventually she was no longer able to attend church services, yet she remained close to her Saviour. She wrote, "My Bible is my church. It is always open, and there is my High Priest ever waiting to receive me. There I have my confessional, my thanksgiving, my psalm of praise, and a congregation of whom the world is not worthy – prophets, and apostles, and martyrs, and confessors; in short, all I can want I find there."

Just as I am - without one plea,

But that Thy blood was shed for me,

And that Thou bidst me come to Thee,

-O Lamb of God, I come!


Just as I am - and waiting not

To rid my soul of one dark blot,

To Thee, whose blood can cleanse each spot,

-O Lamb of God, I come!


Just as I am - though toss'd about

With many a conflict, many a doubt,

Fightings and fears within, without,

-O Lamb of God, I come!


Just as I am - poor, wretched, blind;

Sight, riches, healing of the mind,

Yea, all I need, in Thee to find,

-O Lamb of God, I come!


Just as I am - Thou wilt receive,

Wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve;

Because Thy promise I believe,

-O Lamb of God, I come!


Just as I am - Thy love unknown

Has broken every barrier down;

Now to be Thine, yea, Thine alone,

-O Lamb of God, I come!


Just as I am - of that free love

The breadth, length, depth, and height to prove,

Here for a season, then above,

-O Lamb of God, I come!


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