November 28 – The Songs We Sing – “It Is Well with My Soul!”

Read Isaiah 26:3-4 and Colossians 2:14

I like when things go well… like the project I’m working on goes according to plan, the people in my family are healthy and my friends are in a good place.  Sometimes, God allows trials in our life. You are probably familiar with the song “It is Well with My Soul.” The song was originally a poem penned by Horatio Spafford back in 1876.

The story behind the poem was that Horatio’s wife and 4 daughters were traveling across the Atlantic Ocean when their ship collided with another vessel and sank.  In the accident, all 4 of Horatio’s daughters died.

In the aftermath of the accident, instead of bitterness and anger, there was peace as Horatio knew his children were with Jesus.  Over the next few years he penned the lyrics to the song we sing in difficult times.

“When peace like a river attendeth my way, when sorrow like sea billows roll.  Whatever my lot, thou hast taught me to say, “it is well, it is well with my soul.”

What I love about this song is that each verse tells a story.  Verse one reminds me of God’s perfect peace we read about in Isaiah 26:3,4. (This would be a great time to read Isaiah 26:3,4 and thank Jesus for the perfect peace He offers).

Verse three is my favorite…

“My sin O 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.”

In these words, Horatio refers to Colossians 2:14 where Paul writes that God has cancelled the charge of our legal indebtedness, He took it all away, nailing it to the cross.  This is the very reason Horatio could have that perfect peace.  I love this! I love the idea that I don’t have to shoulder my sins but God has gathered them up, placed them on the very body of the sacrificial lamb – Jesus Christ – and has taken them as far as the east is from the west!  Unbelievable!  (This is a great moment to stop and thank Jesus for His sacrifice for us.)

The last verse is wrapped up in triumph.

“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 descend

Even so, it is well with my soul”

One day, those who call Jesus their Savior and Lord will have their faith rewarded as we will be standing in the presence of our King. I Peter 1:9 says it so well: “For you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.” (This would be a great time to give Jesus praise for His power and for the place that He is preparing.)

So, the next time you are facing an impossible situation, remember we serve a God who provides perfect peace through His blood shed for us and promises an incredible eternity in His presence.

Randy Moomaw

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