I led them with cords of human kindness, with ties of love.@Hosea 11:4

James G. Small, The Revival Hymn Book, second series, 1863.

Constance (Sullivan) Arthur S. Sullivan, 1875 (🔊 pdf nwc).

On one occasion when Mr. Moorehouse and I were holding meetings at Scarboro, in the north of England, the services were attended by a number of Quaker ladies, among them a cousin of John Bright, the great English statesman. Wishing to have this hymn sung at one of the meetings, this lady wrote out the following hymn request: Will Mr. Sankey please repeat the hymn ‘I’ve Found a Friend,’ in his usual way? In thus wording her note she avoided asking me to sing, which is against the custom of the Society of Friends.


We were holding a cottage prayer-meeting in a lodging house, says a minister of Nottinghamshire, England, when a young man lodging there came in to the meeting in fun-seeking manner. We sang, prayed and read a chapter out of God’s Word, and then the young man asked if we would sing a hymn for him. He chose ‘I’ve found a Friend, oh, such a Friend.’ When we had sung one verse he began to shed tears, and I am glad to say that he gave his heart to God through the singing of that beautiful hymn. The next morning, he left the place, but before leaving he wrote me a letter, of which I give these extracts: I asked you sing that hymn because it was a favorite of my darling sister, who is waiting for me at the gates in heaven. I have now promised to meet her there. By God’s help, if we do not meet again on earth, I promise to meet you in heaven. You will always think of me when you sing, I’ve Found a Friend. Show this letter to my two other friends.

Sankey, pp. 170-1

portrait
Arthur S. Sullivan (1842-1900)

I’ve found a friend, O such a friend!
He loved me ere I knew Him;
He drew me with the cords of love,
And thus He bound me to Him;
And round my heart still closely twine
Those ties which naught can sever,
For I am His, and He is mine,
Forever and forever.

I’ve found a friend, O such a friend!
He bled, He died to save me;
And not alone the gift of life,
But His own self He gave me!
Naught that I have mine own I call,
I’ll hold it for the giver,
My heart, my strength, my life, my all
Are His, and His forever.

I’ve found a friend, O such a friend!
All power to Him is given,
To guard me on my onward course,
And bring me safe to Heaven.
The eternal glories gleam afar,
To nerve my faint endeavor;
So now to watch, to work, to war,
And then to rest forever.

I’ve found a friend, O such a friend!
So kind and true and tender,
So wise a counselor and guide,
So mighty a defender!
From Him who loves me now so well
What power my soul can sever?
Shall life or death, shall earth or hell?
No! I am His forever.