I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content:
I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound
(Philippians 4:11-12, NKJV).
Lately I can’t get the words to that wonderful old hymn “It Is Well with My Soul” out of my mind. In fact, I’ve been singing it all morning. After a few choruses I began reflecting on the state of the hymnist who penned those faith-filled words just after losing his entire family. He wrote with a broken heart and, no doubt, had to wipe away many tears in the process, and yet his faith was not damaged or destroyed. He could declare, amidst devastating pain and loss, that he knew his soul was safe in the nail-scarred hands of His Savior.
Now I’m examining my own faith, particularly in light of my own writing. Is it well with my soul—regardless of circumstances? Am I reflecting that in the words I pen, mindful that others will be reading them? I find it easy to trust God and sing His praises when the biggest challenge I face is meeting a writing deadline or planning a special holiday meal. But what about when my “world” caves in—when I lose a loved one or my only source of income dries up or I discover I have a terminal disease? Is everything still “well with my soul” then, or do I find myself questioning God as if I knew more or cared more or planned better than He?
Not only in my writing but in my everyday life, I want to be like the hymn writer who declared that it was well with his soul, even when everything familiar and cherished was stripped away, don’t you? Of course, the only way to get to that point is to immerse ourselves in His presence and love now, while our situations are still relatively positive. I’m recommitting myself to do that, daily and wholeheartedly. Will you join me?