It Is Well [Part II]
2 Kings 4:25-26
When he saw her in the distance, the man of God said to his servant Gehazi, “Look! There’s the Shunammite! Run to meet her and ask her, ‘Are you all right? Is your husband all right? Is your child all right?” “Everything is all right,” she said. NIV
Last week, I talked about the Shunammite woman from 2 Kings 4 who by faith declared, “It is well” in the face of great personal tragedy.
Today, I want to share with you another story from the life of a man named Horatio Gates Spafford who was born in New York in 1828. Spafford was a deeply religious man who loved God and was active in his church. Spafford’s faith was tested by a series of tragic events. In 1871, the Great Chicago Fire destroyed much of Spafford’s investments. Later, he booked passage for himself and his family to England for the sake of his wife’s health and also because he wanted to join his good friend, Dwight L. Moody, who was on an evangelistic tour in England. At the last minute, however, he had to delay his departure to attend to some urgent business. His wife and four daughters went on as scheduled, traveling on board the S.S. Ville du Havre. On November 22, 1873, the S.S. Ville du Havre collided with another ship as it crossed the Atlantic and sank in just 12 minutes. Over two hundred lives were lost, including the Spaffords’ four daughters. Mrs. Spafford was rescued after floating in the water for some hours. After she arrived in Wales, she cabled her husband with the message, “Saved alone.”
Spafford left immediately to join her. He asked the captain of the ship he was sailing on to notify him when they were in the approximate area where the Ville du Havre went down. When he reached there, he was overcome with grief. He went back to his cabin and there, near the scene of his daughters’ tragic deaths, began to write the words of that immortal hymn that would touch generations of believers to come – “It is well with my soul.” I’m sure he did not understand why all this had to happen to him but he found the faith to surrender it all to God. Horatio Spafford eventually met up with Dwight Moody. “It is well,” Spafford told him.
We may not always understand why the Lord allows us to go through difficult times, times of disappointment, times of pain and anguish. Yet in all our trials and tribulations, He is always with us. “I will never leave you nor forsake you,” says the Lord (Joshua 1:5). And be assured of this too – that in all things, God is working for the good of those who love Him (Romans 8:28). Therefore, no matter what we are going through, surely we, of all people, can say, “It is well.” Jesus loves you so much. Be blessed this day.