Romans 15:13 (NIV)
13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

God is the God of hope and the foundation of which hope is built. God is both the object of hope and the creator of hope. As we place our hope in God and lean not upon our own understanding, we trust God that we will find joy and peace. The more hope we find the more abundant the joy and peace. We should look for this hope through the Holy Spirit; the same one that works grace, calls out on our behalf, and gives us strength. We must give the Holy Spirit glory for securing our hope for it is something we cannot obtain through our own power.



In the autumn of 1873, Horatio Spafford, a wealthy Chicago businessman, placed his wife, Anna, and their four children on the Ville du Havre sailing from New York to France. He was forced to stay in the United States for several more weeks to settle some business matters before he could journey to join the family in Europe.

The evening of November 21 found the Ville du Havre prow-east toward France on a calm Atlantic. The journey was progressing beautifully. A few hours later, about two o�clock in the morning on November 22, the Ville du Havre was carrying its sleeping passengers over a quiet sea when two terrific claps like thunder were followed by frightening screams. The engine stopped, the ship stood still. Passageways were filled with terrified, half-dressed people shouting questions that no one could answer. The Ville du Havre had been rammed by the English vessel, the Lochearn.

Mrs. Spafford saw three of her children swept away by the sea while she stood clutching the youngest child. Suddenly, she felt her baby torn violently from her arms. She reached out through the water and caught little Tanetta�s gown. For a minute she held her again. Then the cloth wrenched from her hand. She reached out again and touched a man�s leg in corduroy trousers. She became unconscious. She awoke later, finding that she had been rescued by sailors from the Lochearn. But her four children were gone.
In the meantime, Horatio Spafford was back in the United States, desperate to receive news of his family. Finally, the blow fell. A cable arrived from Wales stating that the four daughters were lost at sea, but his wife was still alive. He was crushed with what had happened. All night he walked the floor in anguish. Toward the morning he turned to his friend, Major Whittle, and said, �I am glad to trust the Lord when it will cost me something.�

On the way across the Atlantic to join his wife, the captain announced that they were now passing the place where the Ville du Havre was wrecked. For Horatio Spafford, this was passing through the valley of the shadow of death. He sat down in his cabin on the high seas, near the place where his children perished, and wrote the hymn that would give comfort to so many, titled �It Is Well with My Soul.� [John Huffman, �The Fruit of the Spirit Is Peace,� PreachingToday.com]

We all pass through those burdensome moments of life, but God can still bring peace and joy back into our life. Through the power of the Holy Spirit Horatio Spafford was able to take a tragic moment and turn it into a song of comfort and hope for others. May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.




Story and song of It is Well With My Soul

Last edited by AskMe; 03/18/13 05:13 AM.