Jessie was born in 1861 in Hiram, Ohio. Her father was Rev. Holland Brown. In all, Jessie wrote 9 books, 50 cantata librettos, and over 400 hymns.
This hymn could have been inspired by a popular sermon illustration circulating during those days:
The geographical heart of London is Charing Cross, which is referred to locally simply as “the Cross”. A London police officer came upon a lost child who was unable to tell him where he lived. Finally, amid sobs and tears, the child simply said, “If you will take me to the Cross, I think I can find my way home from there”.
Lyrics: Jessie Brown Pound
Music: Charles H. Gabriel
I must needs go home by the way of the cross,
There’s no other way but this;
I shall ne’er get sight of the Gates of Light,
If the way of the cross I miss.
The way of the cross leads home,
The way of the cross leads home;
It is sweet to know, as I onward go,
The way of the cross leads home.
I must needs go on in the blood-sprinkled way,
The path that the Savior trod,
If I ever climb to the heights sublime,
Where the soul is at home with God.
Then I bid farewell to the way of the world,
To walk in it nevermore;
For my Lord says, “Come,” and I seek my home,
Where He waits at the open door.
May we look to the death, burial and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ for the gracious gift of Salvation. Amen.