Sunday, September 25, 2011


This morning while Mathew was getting ready for Church he was teasing and joking with me while I sat here in my "cripple chair" having spasms. And the more I laughed the worse they got and the more he joked, and the harder I laughed...
But when he finally left, my six and a half foot, 16 year old son YELLED from the other room as he was walking out the door, "I LOVE YOU, MOM!!"
Then I turned on the computer to watch the church services that I couldn't go to and after Sunday School Eben, the song leader, picked some great songs and I was caterwalling along with the computer, missing being there so bad, as usual, but getting a blessing anyway! Then he came to the last song. Before they sang it he read the history behind the song. I have heard the history before, in part.
This has been one of my all time favorite song for YEARS! This was my song for Mathew and I. All through the pregnancy when I was scared, having surgery, in pain, bedrest, preterm labor, alone, lonely...this was the song I sang for us to comfort my heart and let him hear my voice.
Once he was born, this was his lullaby. This was the song I sang when I walked the floors with him at night or when we were scared and couldn't sleep or we felt alone or when we were driving in the dark or in a snow storm...
Mathew was born on a Thurs. night at 11:20pm. Two and a half days later on Sunday morning (Mother's Day) I stood up and handed him to the preacher and gave him back to God for answering my prayers after 7yrs of praying for a baby! It was and still is "Well with my Soul"!! Yes Satan does buffet and trials do come!! But Christ has regarded my helpless estate and shed His Own blood for my soul! And He is in control and has blessed me beyond measure and I know I do not deserve any of it but oh, I am so very thankful and I treasure it! I treasure every second of it! The wonderful and even the hard parts, because they are gifts!

It Is Well with My Soul 

Horatio Gates Spafford

This hymn was written by a Chicago lawyer, Horatio G. Spafford. You might think to write a worship song titled,
'It is Well with my Soul', you would indeed have to be a rich, successful Chicago lawyer. On the contrary, they came from a man who had suffered almost unimaginable personal tragedy.

Horatio and his wife, Anna, were pretty well-known in 1860’s Chicago. And this was not just because of Horatio's legal career and business endeavors. The Spafford’s were also prominent supporters and close friends of D.L. Moody, the famous preacher. In 1870, however, things started to go wrong. The Spafford’s only son was killed by scarlet fever at the age of four. A year later, it was fire rather than fever that struck. Horatio had invested heavily in real estate on the shores of Lake Michigan. In 1871, every one of these holdings was wiped out by the great Chicago Fire.

Aware of the toll that these disasters had taken on the family, Horatio decided to take his wife and four daughters on a holiday to England. And, not only did they need the rest -- DL Moody needed the help. He was traveling around Britain on one of his great evangelistic campaigns. Horatio and Anna planned to join Moody in late 1873. And so, the Spaffords traveled to New York in November, from where they were to catch the French steamer ‘SS Ville du Havre’ across the Atlantic. Yet just before they set sail, a last-minute business development forced Horatio to delay. Not wanting to ruin the family holiday, Spafford persuaded his family to go as planned. He would follow on later. With this decided, Anna and her four daughters sailed east to Europe while Spafford 
returned west to Chicago. Just nine days later, Spafford received a telegram from his wife in Wales. It read: "Saved alone."

On November 2nd 1873, the ‘SS Ville du Havre’ had collided with the ‘Loch Earn’, an English vessel. It sank in only 12 minutes, claiming the lives of 226 people. Anna Spafford had stood bravely on the deck, with her daughters Annie, Maggie, Bessie and Tanetta clinging desperately to her. Her last memory had been of her baby being torn violently from her arms by the force of the waters. Anna was only saved from the fate of her daughters by a plank which floated beneath her unconscious body and propped her up. When the survivors of the wreck had been rescued, Mrs. Spafford's first reaction was one of complete despair. Then she heard a voice speak to her, 
"You were spared for a purpose." And she immediately recalled the words of a friend, "It's easy to be grateful 
and good when you have so much, but take care that you are not a fair-weather friend to God."

Upon hearing the terrible news, Horatio Spafford boarded the next ship out of New York to join his bereaved wife. Bertha Spafford (the fifth daughter of Horatio and Anna born later) explained that during her father's voyage, the captain of the ship had called him to the bridge. "A careful reckoning has been made", he said, "and I believe we are now passing the place where the ‘SS Ville du Havre’ was wrecked. The water is three miles deep." Horatio then returned to his cabin and penned the lyrics of his great hymn.

The words which Spafford wrote that day come from II Kings 4:26. They echo the response of the Shunammite woman to the sudden death of her only child. Though we are told "her soul is vexed within her", she still maintains that 'It is well." And Spafford's song reveals a man whose trust in the Lord is as unwavering as hers was.

It would be very difficult for any of us to predict how we would react under circumstances similar to those experienced by the Spaffords. But we do know that the God who sustained them would also be with us.

No matter what circumstances overtake us may we be able to say with Horatio Spafford...

It Is Well with My Soul 

  1. 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.
  • Refrain:
    It is well, with my soul,
    It is well, it is well, with my soul.
  1. 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.

It is well, with my soul,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.
  1. 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 is well, with my soul,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.
  1. 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.

It is well, with my soul,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.
  1. 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!

It is well, with my soul,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.
  1. 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.
It is well, with my soul,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.

Horatio G. Spafford, 1873
Composed byPhilip Bliss
Bliss called his tune ‘Ville du Havre’, from the name of the stricken vessel.
The Spaffords later had three more children, one of whom (a son) died in infancy. In 1881 the Spaffords, including baby Bertha and newborn Grace, set sail for Israel. The Spaffords moved to Jerusalem and helped found a group called the American Colony; its mission was to serve the poor.

Although the original manuscript reads "know" at the end of the third line, almost all recordings and written reproductions read "say".

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