Horatio Spafford and Phillip Bliss wrote what is possibly the most beautiful and enduring hymn ever written. And the reason why it has stood the test of time is because it paints such a wonderful and accurate picture of God.

“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.”

When Spafford wrote this hymn, he was going through a difficult time. His business was badly hit and his four daughters passed on when their ship sank in the Atlantic. Yet through it all, he was still able to say that it was well with his soul.

In many ways, Spafford was a lot like Noah. It is recorded for us in Genesis,

“This is the genealogy of Noah. Noah was just a man, perfect in his generations. Noah walked with God.” Genesis 6:9

Noah was just like your average Joe, human, just like you and me. And he walked with God, just like we do. And he was called to do God’s bidding, just like sometimes we are. And he tries, just like we do. And just like us, when we try to do His will, try and live a good life, set a good example, Noah also must have had times when he wondered if he heard right. After all, he was the only one doing it. And what he was doing was counter-culture to everyone else. For the apostle Matthew tells us that,

“For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark,” Matthew 24:38

Can you imagine something like that happening now? Won’t you find it even a little strange if you saw a modern day Noah at work? And can you imagine how Noah felt when the flood finally came? He was 600 years old. He has his whole family with him, them and all the animals that God told him to collect so that they could populate the earth with. What a responsibility. And to top it all off, everyone he knew outside his family was dying and drowning.

“And all flesh died that moved on the earth: birds and cattle and beasts and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth, and every man. All in whose nostrils was the breath of the spirit of life, all that was on the dry land, died.” Genesis 7:21-22

But God was faithful and He preserved Noah and his family, and the animals that were with them. God was with Noah for it is written,

“Then God remembered Noah, and every living thing, and all the animals that were with him in the ark.” Genesis 8:1

Is it not so wonderful that the Spirit took pains to differentiate every living thing from the animals? God does not leave out anyone.

And after all that was over, God swore to Noah,

“So God blessed Noah and his sons, and said to them: “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth. And the fear of you shall be on every beast of the earth, on every bird of the air, on all that move on the earth, and on all the fish of the sea. They are all given into your hand.” Genesis 9:1-2

God, in today’s terms, did a reboot of the earth and returned it to its default pristine state and gave Noah the same charge and rights as He gave Adam at the beginning of creation.

“Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” Genesis 1:28

So what can we learn from Noah’s example?

If we walk with Jesus, like sheep, follow our great Shepherd, He takes care of us, and carries us through our trials. Through our troubles, He never forgets us. He even remembers every living thing that is around us. Of how much more value are we to Him?!

And at the end of that journey, He will bless us and give to us all things.

For this reason, Spafford was able to pen down in his hymn, the following verse,

“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.”

Dearly beloved child of God, we can rejoice even in our times of trouble simple because of this,

“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!”

We are forgiven, we are loved, and we have Jesus on our side, watching over us. Take heart beloved child of God. For in Jesus we can truly say, in the face of any situation, it is well, with my soul.

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