Fanny Crosby, though blinded in infancy, greeted friends and strangers alike with a cheerful "God bless your dear soul." And, according to her own statement, she never attempted to write a hymn without first kneeling in prayer. If this be true, Fanny Crosby spent considerable time on her knees. She wrote no less than 8,000 songs.
Miss Crosby was often under pressure to meet deadlines. It was under such circumstances in 1869 that she tried to write words for a tune composer W. H. Doane had sent her. But she couldn't write. Then she remembered she had forgotten her prayer. Rising from her knees, she dictated—as fast as her assistant could write—words for the famous hymn, "Jesus, Keep Me Near the Cross."
But one day in 1874, Fanny Crosby prayed for more material things. She had run short of money and needed five dollars—even change. There was no time to draw on her publishers, so she simply prayed for the money. Her prayer ended, she was walking to and fro in her room trying to "get into the mood" for another hymn when an admirer called. Greeting the stranger with "God bless your dear soul," the two chatted briefly.
In the parting handshake the admirer left something in the hymn-writer's hand. It was five dollars. Rising from a prayer of thanks the blind poetess wrote: "All the way my Savior leads me."
I love this story but I also love what was written about William Carey and his prayer life.
William Carey was once reproached for spending so much time in prayer that he neglected his business. He replied that supplication, thanksgiving, and intercession were much more important in his life than laying up treasures on earth. "Prayer is my real business!" he said. "Cobbling shoes is a sideline; it just helps me pay expenses."
The Lord honored Carey's vigorous faith, for he became a renowned missionary and was mightily used by God in India, Burma, and the East Indies.