Wednesday, November 25, 2015

It Is Well With My Soul

It is Well With My Soul was written in 1873 by Horatio G. Spafford.  He and his family lived in Chicago and survived the tragic Chicago Fire of 1871, then in 1873 his wife and daughters were traveling on a boat to England when their boat was struck by another and sunk.  His wife survived, but his three daughters perished in the shipwreck.  Although the exact date is not certain, it is believed that Spafford wrote this hymn as he sailed to England to be reunited with his grieving wife.  This man had dealt with much tragedy in a short period of time, yet he still knew peace from God and could say, "It is well with my soul!"

When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou hast 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.

Philippians 4:7 (Amplified version) says, "And the peace of God [that peace which reassures the heart, that peace] which transcends all understanding, [that peace which] stands guard over your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus [is yours]."  This peace that Spafford speaks of is the peace of God.  It is steady even through a sea of sorrows.  The presence of this peace doesn't necessarily mean happiness, but a knowledge that our God is in control and His will is perfect.  It is well with my soul because I know these truths!

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ hath regarded my helpless estate,And hath shed His own blood for my soul.
 Christ understands the buiffets, temptations, and trials of Satan.  The account of Jesus being tempted by Satan can be found in Matthew 4:1-11.  He overcame Satan then, and He fully defeated Satan when He died on the cross and rose again!  As I've heard said many times, "Have you read the end of the book?  We win!"  The battle is already won by Christ, but He still regards us in our helpless tempted state and loves us so much!  What a sweet, sweet God we serve!
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!
It truly is glorious when we realize that our sins were nailed to the cross with our Savior! He has paid the price and because of that truth I will praise the Lord all my days! He has paid the price for me.  
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 wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul.

But, Lord, ’tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait,
The sky, not the grave, is our goal;
Oh, trump of the angel! Oh, voice of the Lord!
Blessed hope, blessed rest of my soul!
These two verses were new to me but I love them! I had a conversation with someone recently about how in heaven there is constant praise being sung to God and yet it never gets boring! It's so hard to comprehend what that will be like, but I long for the day when (as this hymn continues to say later) my faith shall be sight and I will know and understand this because I will be there with the Lord.  Until that day, I will continue to seek and serve the Lord here on earth, knowing as the next verse say, that my goal and final end is not the grave. It is to be in the presence of Christ!
And Lord, haste the day when the faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend, Even so, it is well with my soul.
Even though this day has not yet come, it is well with my soul, for my Lord is good and speaks peace and comfort to me here. Come Lord Jesus!

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