Out in the highways and byways of life

Out in the highways and byways of life,
  Many are weary and sad;
Carry the sunshine where darkness is rife,
  Making the sorrowing glad.
  Make me a blessing, make me a blessing,
Out of my life may Jesus shine;
Make me a blessing, O Savior, I pray,
  Make me a blessing to someone today.
Tell the sweet story of Christ and His love,
  Tell of His pow’r to forgive;
Others will trust Him if only you prove
  True, every moment you live.
Give as ’twas given to you in your need,
  Love as the Master loved you;
Be to the helpless a helper indeed,
  Unto your mission be true.

Columbia, South Carolina, United States

To Randy, St. Paul, MN,--Amen!! Hallelujah!! God used you to answer my questions, both about "my cup overflowing" & the gift of more to the first born!! It was just what I was thinking but I wasn't sure! Thank you for your blessing & encouragement for me the one who is holding out my cup!! Thank You Lord God Almighty Jesus my Savior!! Hallelujah!! Praise God's Holy Name Forever & I'll love You Forever!!! And also Thank you to my brother Gerald for the Wonderful song!! I love you!! God bless you!!! 🙌🙌🙏🙏👏👏👏👏💞💝💗💕❤❤❤❤

Noella Gueit


I am now 64. The Lord revived this hymn in my heart this morning in my devotions and realise how much this generation needs me. O Lord, make me a blessing.


St. Paul, MN, United States

We are all familiar with the words of the 23rd Psalm:

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.

He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

— Psalm 23:1-6

It is amazing that God should take such an undertaking. By keeping focus on self and inadequacies, we feel unworthy, overwhelmed. But the psalmist is recording what the Lord is doing. It is a testimony of the motivation and intent of our Creator.

I am drawn to the phrase: my cup runneth over. It is a blessing that we are taken care of in such a way, but when the cup is full, why would God keep on pouring? It would seem wasteful to keep pouring once the cup is full. The phrase implies that God keeps pouring once the cup is full.

I know from other scripture that God is not wasteful, and that nothing that He supplies returns to Him void. So why keep pouring? What is the lesson in that?

I received a revelation to take my focus away from my own needs and lack. I know that God is not a respecter of persons (Acts 10:34), and God shows no favoritism (Romans 2:11). Yet, when God gives me an abundance while there is so much lack in others, does that seem right or fair? Is he showing favoritism to me over others? Does He violate his word that He does not show favoritism?

Add to this, the verses in the Old Testament, where the firstborn is given a double portion of the inheritance: “But he shall acknowledge the firstborn . . . by giving him a double portion of all that he has, for he is the first fruits of his strength. The right of the firstborn is his” (Deuteronomy 21:17)

Now I’m getting a little perplexed. On one hand God shows no partiality, and on the other, in some cases, God does grant an unequal portion or blessing. How can this be reconciled?

The key is to take focus off self, and the feeling that we are the receiver of God’s special blessing, or that we are that special to God. We are special to Him, but if there is no distinction in Him, then we are not being treated any more favorably than anyone else. That may seem humbling at first, until we realize that God is not holding back. What we are receiving and experiencing is not unlike what anyone else should be receiving at His hand.

Take the verse about the double portion in Deuteronomy. Is the first born that special – especially if the parent is claiming no favoritism? So why give the firstborn an increase? Obviously, the firstborn is free to use the gift in any manner he chooses. But this view focuses on the receiver. What is the intent of the father – the one bestowing the gift? Could it be that the father is trying to provide for his family in the event of his absence or death? By giving a double portion to his firstborn, he can provide for the needs of the other siblings by making his firstborn an administrator of his gifts, and can give to each according to need. The double portion allows the firstborn to meet the needs of the family without making the task a sacrifice, but giving out of abundance. We are never required to give out of a lack (sacrifice) but to give out of abundance. God supplies in advance, and makes us administrators of his blessings, whether material goods, time to listen or help, a word of edification, consolation, or encouragement, etc. He fills our cup with these blessings in advance, not for us only, for He does fill our cup, but for them – those people around us standing in need, who would otherwise not be ministered to.

He keeps on pouring into our cup because of those in our presence who stand with cup in hand outstretched, catching the overflow out of our cup. Because He goes ahead and prepares the way, when our cup is filled to overflowing, we cannot help but be a blessing to others.

You only need to have the desire in your heart to be a blessing to others. Realize that it is already in place, and taking place. We walk by faith and not by sight. We will never see the true extent of the work that God has undertaken in us.


Saint Paul, MN, United States

When I was a teen, I sang in an interfaith choir for a while. A song that grabbed me then, and has remained a song in my heart still, was titled, “Make Me a Blessing”. It seems that when we turn our focus away from self, unexpected things happen. Other peoples’ lives get impacted, and one’s personal issues and distractions diminish.

When I try to merge into traffic on the highway, or catch someone wanting for patience trying to scoot around my car, I realize how much I still need to surrender to become the blessing that the song beckons me to become. As I ease off the accelerator I whisper a prayer: “God, bless that person, and forgive me for allowing myself to become an adversary.”

I would that my life be completely emptied of self, so that when God turns my life on end and looks through it, He sees nothing but a hollowed out Me. I would that if He looked through my life at Jesus Christ, He would see nothing but Jesus Christ. If I am truly emptied of myself and hollowed out, then I can be used as a channel of His love and grace. If you would talk to my family and friends, they would confirm the desire I have to be a blessing, but they would also point out that I’m a work in progress, and have far to go to completely, or even adequately, reflect Jesus Christ.

But, that I be made a blessing is still an over-arching desire in me. If the choice were mine, I would make it so. But I am not God, nor do I presume to usurp my wishes over those of our God and Creator. However, He put the song in my heart and brought me here with this desire in my heart, for His purpose. I pray for patience to allow Him to perfect His purpose in me, to the benefit and blessing of my brethren and sisters.

In the Gospel of Luke I read that the common people received Jesus gladly. Jesus is quoted as saying that God is benevolent, even to those who are ungrateful or are evil. If I had some other image of who God is, that verse makes me replace former conceptions with one that is a bit more expansive. In the process, I change my relation with God and my fellow man. If this God, this Creator, is my Father, then I too must be benevolent to all, including those who are ungrateful or evil. This is the essence of GRACE. In Jesus, there was no “them and us”. In Jesus, there is only “us”. In me, there needs to no longer be any “them and us”. In me, there needs to be only “us”. It is an easy process if you think about it. It requires one simple redirect: move from living your life in your head, and start living your life out of your heart. Living in your head keeps focus on self. Living in one’s heart, moves the focus from self to others. If there is to be no “them and us” in my life, I need to move out of what my head is presuming, and follow the acceptance of things as they are meant to be in my heart.

I would love to fellowship with heart people.


TX, United States

I am a Bible study teacher and each Sunday I try to end our lesson with a hymn. This week the study was in Acts 10 on Peter and Cornelius. This song came to mind of how two men from such diverse backgrounds came to be a blessing to each other and those around them.


Elizabeth City, NC, United States

We have chosen to use this hymn on Sunday as a Mothers Day appreciation for one of our ladies who is a wonderfully, faithful servant of the church! An old song with a powerful reminder!

Margie Renegar

Huntsville, Alabama, United States

The Lord brought this song to my memory today! What a blessing this hymn was and is! Thanks for this site!

Gloria Spencer

Conyers, GA, United States

My experience was similar to Bob's. The chorus came to me from years past as I was waking. It was the expression of my heart's desire. Singing it brought verses 1 & 3 to my memory. Thank you, Holy Spirit. I hope to live it today.


Great old song, been singing it for over 65 years, it's Christ's commission to us when He ascended!!!

Bob Shank Jr

Tucson, Arizona, United States

As Ashley, I sang this song in a Baptist church (but in Chicopee, Massachusetts) as a youth almost 60 years ago. I had forgotten it until it popped up in my head this morning shortly after I woke up. That was a blessing all on its own! I even remembered some of the words, but eventually wound up on this site to read and sing them all again. Thank you for this old favorite so much!