Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Is it well??

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

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 lifeThou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul.
It is well, with my soul,It is well, it is well, with my soul.

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.

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.

Can something be well with your soul, but not well with your mind??

I've been thinking about this alot lately. I have peace about where my family members are that have passed away within the last year... but I still miss them. Alot.

On Saturday morning when we found out Mawmaw had passed away, I immediately began thinking of things I should have said, when I should have called, etc... but am very content in knowing that she's up in heaven... but I'm going to miss her. I haven't cried alot... but I am going to miss her sweet laugh, genuine interest in my life, great cooking, and "love you" before we would hang up the phone...

Friday night when I got home I began missing daddy in a different way because I was surrounded by all his stuff! In Birmingham I'm surrounded by pictures of him... but not his hats, boots, clothes, guitars, deers mounted on the walls, etc... that I see as soon as I walk into my home. Over the past few days of being at home... I have just wanted to see him and smell him...know that he is here...and it's still weird that he's not. I went to visit his grave yesterday (and threw all the pinecones around him over the fence... that was always my job at home), and literally wanted to just lay there and be as close to his physical body as I could (maybe morbid... but I'm being honest - though I didn't actually lay down... just stood for a little while). So, is this really "well with my soul," when my mind is still in a state of loss?

This hymn is a favorite of many of my family members... but I know that I have had a hard time singing it in the last few months... I did a little research on the hymn and found that the author took the verse from Psalm 146. In my NKJV translation... this capter begins and ends with "Praise the Lord!,' and there are several great verses that really encourage me as I go through the, "It is well vs. It's not well" dilema...

"Praise the Lord, O my soul!
While I live I will praise the Lord;
I will sing praises to my God while I have my being."
Psalm 146: 1-2
While I am able, I shall praise. I have learned that it is best to praise when you can be honest about it though. There have been days when I literally could not get the words to a song out of my mouth because my heart wasn't behind it. On those days, I have learned to pray for strength to be able to praise. Because not matter what loss we have been through, God gave us something or someone that was a big enough part of our lives that their loss has affected us greatly... so if for nothing else, we should praise God for the times we had with that person, with the blessing of experiencing that opportunity... because to lose anything, you must have gained something previously.

"Happy is he who has the God of Jacob for his help,
Whose hope is in the Lord his God,
Who made heaven and earth,
The sea, and all that is in them;
Who keeps truth forever..."
Psalm 146: 5-6
In my darkest valleys, I must recognize that I have help... and that help is the Lord who made heaven and earth. If God has the ability to create the universe and an ameoba... how could He not have the ability to comfort me?! ... He does have the ability... and He will. I must find hope in my Creator... after all, He's not only the creator of heaven and earth, He's the creator of Comfort as well...
"The Lord watches over the strangers;
He relieves the fatherless and widow..."
Psalm 146: 9
Well now this one hit me like a big ton of bricks... You see, the Lord loves all of His creations, and He watches over them all... but this verse says to me that He's got a special watchful eye over me, Shane, mom, Aunt Lanell, Uncle Lloyd... and all of those who have lost spouses or fathers. How can I not find comfort in this fact?? How can this NOT make my soul feel well?!
The grieving process is a continual one. I know that there will be good days and bad days for us all... but regardless of what type of day it may be for any of us... we must remember the big picture. God's watching over us, God is our help, God is our hope, and God deserves our praise... whether it's well or not.

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