Hymn Challenge #2: It is Well With My Soul
Words Written by: Horatio Gates Spafford
b. October 20, 1828; d. October 16, 1888
Horatio G. Spafford was born in North Troy, New York, on October 20, 1828. Mr. Spafford, was a well-known attorney. He and his wife Anna, had six children—5 girls and 1 boy. He also had a lot of real estate interests but lost a great deal in the great Chicago fire of 1871. Their only son died at the age of 4 from scarlet fever. Their 6th child, the last daughter, was not born until after a great tragedy which I will share in a moment.
Mr. Spafford and his wife were good friends with D. L. Moody, founder of the Moody Bible Institute and Moody Publishers. Mr. Moody needed help in Britian as he was on an evangelistic campaign. Mr. Spafford and his wife were going to travel to Britian to help Mr. Moody; however, Horatio Spafford was delayed due to business. So, he urged his wife to take their 4 daughters and head to Britain ahead of him; he would then join them later. Nine days after his family left, Mr. Spafford received a telegram from his wife in Wales stating "saved alone." Their ship had collided with another ship and sank within 12 minutes. The Spafford's 4 daughters drown, and Mrs. Spafford was "saved alone." Horatio Spafford immediately boarded the next ship to join his wife in Wales. On his way, he wrote this hymn.
As I studied the story behind this hymn, I could not help but be brought to tears. This has always been one of my favorite hymns but I have never known the story behind it. You can believe I will sing it with new understanding next time it is played in church or at BSF. What a tragedy both he and his wife suffered—losing 4 children at once. Can you imagine? I can't even begin to think of such horrific circumstances yet Mr. Spafford turns to the Lord and pens this beautiful hymn.
So, what is the position of your faith? Are you enduring trials well? Are you living a powerful and fulfiling life? Is it well with your soul? Is it well with your children's souls? Can you say that when you die or when your children die that they will be in heaven with Jesus? One of our greatest gifts in the loss of a loved one is to know that they are spending eternity with Christ if they have accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. Jesus cares about the position of your faith!
Verses 2 and 3 of this hymn are truly my favorite verses in this hymn.
Though Satan should buffet,
though trials should come,
let this blest assurance control:
that Christ has regarded my helpless estate,
and has shed his own blood for my soul.
Trials are going to come. When we experience trials and we are still able to praise God, it proves our faith is true. As Christians, our joy is found in our relationship with Christ not our circumstances. Just as Mr. Spafford experienced an unimaginable loss, he was still able to focus on God and praise Him. What a beautiful example we see in this hymn.
Romans 8:28 "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose."
1 Peter 1:8 "Though you have not seen Him, you love Him; and even though you do not see Him now, you believe in Him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy."
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!
His joy should be ours because of our new life in Christ. Our sins have been nailed to the cross, and we no longer have to carry the burden of guilt. His shed blood covers our sin. When you suffer, in sin do you lash out at those around you or that happen to cross your path at the wrong time? Or, do you keep your emotions in check and submit to God and reflect His character? Through Jesus' suffering, we can rise above our circumstances. Suffer well! Will you remember to reflect the goodness of God through your trials and circumstances?
Psalm 34:19 "A righteous man may have many troubles, but the Lord delivers him from them all."
John 14:27 "Peace I leave with you; My peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid."
Romans 5:1-4 "Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character, and character, hope."
1 Peter 5:6-7 "Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that He may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you."
Are you willing to trust God with your suffering and know that He has a great plan? Endure suffering well in His strength! Your present trouble does have a divine purpose and a plan. Trust Him and abide in the peace that only the Holy Spirit can give.
To see all of the verses to this hymn, please click here. And below you will find the sheet music to "It is Well With My Soul." Also, be sure to check out the link I have below for you today.
Click here to hear Greg Howlett play this beautiful hymn on piano.
For my 6x6 page today, I layered several papers from the Authentique Fresh pack then added two beautiful chipboard pieces from Blue Fern Studios—nested circles and organic vine. I painted them both with Tim Holtz picket fence crackle paint. I was going to ink them a bit but then decided to leave them white because of the other white on the layout. I liked it that way. And I really had trouble picking a verse. I loved all of the ones above. I finally decided on 1 Peter 1:8. It describes how I feel about the Lord, and I know "it is well with my soul." What a great joy that brings to me and I pray my family too!
Embellishments: Blue Fern Studios nested circles and organic vine chipboard painted with Tim Holtz picket fence crackle paint; Melissa Frances resin piece; Prima Corine flowers; red flower and leaves from Wild Orchid Crafts; misc. cheesecloth; sewing machine
Remember to use Keyword HSCRC13 when posting your creations in any online galleries. Also, please leave a link to your creation here using Inlinkz! To see all of the information regarding this challenge and the previous studies, please see this post here. Thanks for joining me today, and may God bless you richly as you study His word!