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It Is Well

 

“Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I put my hope in God! I will praise Him again and again – my Saviour and my God!” Psalm 42:5



Have you ever felt downcast and weary like David did in the psalms? Sometimes we start our day feeling downhearted and we aren’t even sure why. It could be the weather, it could be something you dreamt about. It could be anything. Most of the time there is no reason.
 
Sometimes people think if they just have something extra in their lives, they will be happy and it will lift them out their sadness. Whatever it is, it will only be satisfying for a little while. Eventually, they will be back to where they started – feeling lonely, upset and afraid. 
 
A lot of the time when we find ourselves discouraged, we forget about God or alternatively, place blame on God for our feelings because He is not doing what we want Him to. 
 
David teaches us through the pslams that we need to quickly place our hope in God when we are feeling downhearted, depressed and sad. He suggests we do this by praising God. When I read this particular passage of scripture, I think about the writer of the popular hymn, It Is Well. Let’s take a quick look at the first verse of this hymn:
 
When peace like a river attendeth my way
when sorrow like sea billows roll
whatever my lot, thou has taught me to say
It is well, it is well with my soul.
 
This is a perfect verse to remember when striving for a contented heart. Spafford and his family lived in Chicago, where he was a successful businessman. In the great fire of 1871, he lost so much he and his family decided to take a vacation. He wanted to visit a friend of his who was in England, but was delayed by business – so he sent his wife and children on a ship ahead of them with plans to meet them there. On the way, the ship his family was on struck an iron sailing vessel and sank to the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean. Spafford’s wife Anna was saved from drowning, but the children were gone. When she arrived in England, she wired Horatio with the message “saved alone.” He sailed out to meet his wife shortly after, and the captain informed him when they were sailing over the area where the ship had gone down. It was at this moment in time, Horatio Spafford  penned this beautiful, timeless hymn of peace and praise. 
 
In the midst of sorrow and despair, he was able to write about a comfort that comes from a strong faith in God. 


This is such a powerful story. In the midst of utter turmoil and loss, this man searched deep within his heart and found a peace that only comes from God.



In the midst of your broken place, if your hope is growing thin, put your hope in God and seek His presence. When you look to reassuring face of Christ, you will find that precious peace that no one can describe. It only comes from Him.

 
It Is Well
Horatio G. Spafford, 1873
 
When peace, like a river, attendeth my way
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say,
It is well, it is well with my soul.
 
Refrain:
It is well, with my soul
It is well, it is well with my soul.
Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ has regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.
My sin, oh the bliss of this glorious thought!
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!
For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live:
If Jordan above me shall roll,
No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life
Thou shalt whisper Thy peace to my soul.
But Lord, ’tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait,
The sky, not the grave, is our foal;
Oh, trump of the angel! Oh, voice of the Lord,
Blessed hope, blessed rest of my soul!
And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descent,
Even so, it is well with my soul.
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