Written by Adelaide A. Pollard, a woman who wrote hymns, but we can’t be sure how many as she seldom signed them. Her devotion was to furthering the cause of God, not to seeking recognition for her own work.
This particular hymn was inspired by the prayer of an elderly woman who asked God to simply “Just have your own way with us”.
“As Adelaide left the prayer meeting that night the phrase from that
prayer, “Have Thine own way”, rang in her mind. On the way home she
formed the lyrics in her mind and before going to bed that night, she
wrote the words on paper.” (source)
The tanbible includes this tidbit “Upon
returning home that evening, Miss Pollard mediated on the story of the
potter, found in Jeremiah 18:3-4.
I went to the potter’s house, and behold, he wrought a work on the
wheels. And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of
the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the
potter to make it.”
Search me and try me, Savior today!
Wash me just now, Lord, wash me just now,
as in thy presence humbly I bow.
The reason for that change being found here. Personally I think she’s meaning how our hearts are changed from being dark with sin to be being white with the light of being cleansed by God’s work in our lives.