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21/03/2021 03:00 - 22/03/2021 02:00

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid” – John 14:27

One of the most moving Christian song ever written is, “ Its well with my soul!” To hear it sung in cathedrals, concerts or at funerals, always leaves one with goose bumps. It has uplifted many through the most difficult of moments, soothing  their weary spirit.

Its coming into being in many ways show how God so often uses difficult situations to bless so many.

In 1871. Horatio Spafford, was one of the wealthiest lawyers, based in Chicago. He was also a devout Christian, along with his wife Ann, and their four daughters. They attended the Presbyterian church where he was an elder. Horatio was active in the abolition crusade to end slavery and his house was a meeting place for activists like Frances E. Willard, president of the National Women's Christian Temperance Union, and evangelical leaders like Dwight Moody, who led a religious revival in America and Europe. Spafford, had invested considerably in real estate and was a generous supporter of Moody’s ministry. But early in 1871 came the Great Fire of Chicago that destroyed Spafford's sizable investment.

Devastated from the loss, Spafford, seeking to recover, two years later, decided to go for a holiday in Europe. But at the last minute he was detained by business, letting Ann and his four daughters to proceed, hoping to join them. No sooner had they left when the ship in which they were had an accident and sank within minutes. All the four children drowned, though Anna survived.

Spafford on receiving the news decided to go and pick up Ann. When he got to the spot where the ship had sunk, in his despair came the words that have brought respite to so many, through generations.

“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… Let this blest assurance control That Christ ...has regarded my helpless estate, And has shed His own blood for my soul. It is well…With my soul..
It is well, it is well with my soul.”

It is said as Annn saw her daughters going down, she said, “God gave me four daughters. Now they have been taken from me. Someday I will understand.” And, indeed, “It is well with my soul” was God’s gift to all of mankind through such a tragedy.

Prayer for today: Lord Father God of heaven, sometimes through tragedies, it is difficult to understand or appreciate the moment; but as the song goes, whatever the difficulty may be, “Its well with my soul” for you are with me, no matter! This I pray in Jesus’s name.

 

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    "The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by human hands” (Acts 17:24)

    When in his missionary journey the Apostle Paul ventured into the city of Athens he was struck by two things. First, the Athenians spent most of the day doing nothing but talking about the latest ideas (Acts 17:21). In spite of that they could not figure out who the great God is and his plan for their salvation.

    Secondly, Paul noticed Athens was filled with temples and statutes all over. In fact he came across one altar marked with an inscription to an “unknown god” (verse 23). The Athenians were a very religious people, searching God but with no idea of his plans for salvation through Jesus.
    The experience of Paul travelling through Athens could be the same with any of us visiting our modern cities. It is easy to find folks arguing about where truth can be found on social media almost all day. And then also one can find temples of all nature rising across the city. This is usually where they have assigned and restricted God as folks go about their lives.

    One thing Paul reminded the Athenians is that in spite of all their great arguments and temples the truth was actually not far from them. “From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundary of their lands. God did this so that they should seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any of us” (Acts 17:27-28).

    Today, you may find yourself in a situation similar to that of the Athenians, where you are searching for the truth, yet it is so close to you. “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me” (Revelation 3:20).

    Prayer for today: Lord Father in heaven, today I pray in the blessed name of Jesus, to know and share the truth of your salvation like Paul did for you are not far from any who truly desires to know you, this I pray in Jesus’ name!

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