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It Is Well With My Soul

Joseph Morrow - January 16, 2017

it is well with my soul, song, sorrow, worship
Sunday's Songs
As Long As You Are Glorified
Happy Day
It Is Well With My Soul
Come What May

Horatio G. Spafford was born in North Troy, New York, on October 20, 1828. A financially successful man, he loved Christ & His word. In 1871, Spafford made a large real estate investment on the shore of Lake Michigan. Within months, the Chicago Fire of 1871 destroyed his entire investment.

Two years later, in 1873, Spafford planned to take his family to Europe to help some evangelist friends. Just before departure, unexpected business kept Horatio in Chicago, but he sent his wife and four daughters ahead on the S.S. Ville du Havre, planning to meet them in Europe in the coming days.

On November 22 the ship carrying Spafford’s family was struck by another ship and sank. Mrs. Spafford was among a few survivors who made it to Wales. Horatio was heartbroken to receive word from her that their four daughters had drowned.

Spafford set sail to join his grieving wife in Europe. En route, on the same seas where his daughters lost their lives, Horatio wrote the familiar hymn “It Is Well With My Soul”.

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.

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!

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.

Note how his words--though painfully personal--do not dwell in sorrow. They center upon the redeeming work of Jesus and the anticipation of His return. Only sovereign grace could produce such conviction & hope from such sorrow & loss: “It Is Well With My Soul”.

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble at its swelling. -Psalm 46.1-3

Even in the midst of his darkest night, Spafford continued to worship. Whether in peace or in sorrow, whatever his lot, his Lord assured him: through the cross & the eternal joy set before him, all, indeed, was well with his soul.

So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison. -2 Corinthians 4.16-17

If you're ever in the throws of darkness, how will you respond? May we behold our hope in the Lord Jesus and, in the grip of His grace, worship.

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. -Romans 8.28

I eagerly await worshipping with you this Sunday.

To the glory of Christ,

Joseph Morrow