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
Horatio Spafford, a devout Christian, wrote these words. What’s inspiring is when and where they were penned.
Mr. Spafford was on a ship crossing over the same spot of the sea that had just claimed the lives of his four daughters. This tragedy was not long after he had lost his only son. Within a short amount of time, Horatio had lost all his children and suffered financial calamities, yet while climbing out of grief still kept his faith in the Lord.
When times are good, we tend to be able to thank God and praise Him. But when the waves keep coming and won’t stop, when sea billows roll, we find it not only difficult but not willing to praise God for anything. Horatio Spafford was able to praise Him in the storm. But how could he, and why would he do this? Horatio immersed himself in the Scriptures. One can only deduce his filling of God’s Word was what strengthened and sustained him to write such words of trust in the Lord.
When you hear people say the Bible, the Scriptures, are the Living Word of God, this is another way of saying, the Scriptures are for transformation, not information. God’s Words literally are strengthening, sustaining, and fulfilling. So sit and soak in the Bible and let the Living Word of God fill you and quench your thirst.
I wonder if Mr. Spafford had the following on the forefront of his mind as he wrote this famous hymn:
God is our protection and our strength.
He always helps in times of trouble.
So we will not be afraid even if the earth shakes,
or the mountains fall into the sea,
even if the oceans roar and foam,
or the mountains shake at the raging sea. Psalm 46:1-3
It has been God’s Word and God’s people who have strengthened me during times of sorrow. But I’ll never stop praying and asking the Lord to teach me to say, “Whatever my lot, Lord, it is well, it is well, with my soul.”