Thursday, September 16, 2010


My daughter and I are finishing up a study of Luke. Today we came to the part, shortly before Jesus' arrest where He went into the garden with some of his disciples. He asked them to pray but overcome by their exhaustion, they fell asleep. I have often been baffled by this. Why couldn't they stay awake for their dear friend and master? Did they not sense the urgency of what was about to happen?
But today, a new thought occurred to me. I think Jesus knew they would fall asleep and He brought them into the garden to illustrate a point. Before this event, they had all been celebrating what we now call The Last Supper. At this meal, Jesus was warning them. He was trying to get them to understand that things were going to get tough. If they thought things were tough before, that was nothing compared to what was coming. He even tells Peter that Satan has asked to sift him like wheat and indicates that Peter will fall into temptation by saying when you turn back, strengthen your brothers.
So my daughter and I talked this morning about how it feels when you are super sleepy and how hard it is to try and stay awake. And how sometimes, no matter what you do, your body just succumbs to the sleepiness. We related this to our weakness. When things get tough or scary and we are not at the top of our game, it's kind of like when we are sleepy and that is when Satan loves to jump in and attack us. And sometimes, despite our best efforts, those are the times when we tend to succumb to sin.
Jesus knew things were going to get unbearably tough for his disciples and he knew how important it would be for them to stay strong. He also knew that they would falter at times and I think he wanted them to remember that fight to stay awake and use it in their fight against Satan.
But there is more to the story. Every morning we wake up, refreshed from our sleep. Jesus told Peter, when you turn back, not if but when. We always have the opportunity to start fresh with God, even when we blow it in our weakness and succumb to the temptations of Satan. Everyday we get a new chance to allow God to refresh our souls and there is no greater refreshment than that which comes from the Prince of Peace.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


I have spent alot of time lately thinking about the travelers on the road to Emmaus. You remember the story at the end of Luke? Shortly after Jesus' death, two men were travelling when Jesus appeared to them. Only they didn't recognize it was Jesus at first. How many times have I neglected to recognize Jesus in my life? I have gotten really good at creating these fantasies in my head of how I think Jesus should act that sometimes I fail to see Him when He is right in front of me.

That's what I think happened with these men. Jesus' death took them by surprise. They were so focused on their current problem, Israel's oppression, that they failed to see the bigger picture. Jesus was supposed to be their Savior yet now he was gone and Rome must have seemed even more powerful. They missed the looming problem, the oppression of the world and it was hard for them to see how Jesus' death could have solved anything. It took Jesus himself to explain everything to them before these men could understand that His death was a victory and not a defeat.

I can so relate to these men. My self-centeredness leads me to miss so much of what God has for me. I focus on my own small problems and I miss how God might want to use me for something or someone else. When God doesn't act the way I think He should, I become distraught and short-sighted and I forget that this life is not all about me. How I long for the sense of community that is described in the early church in Acts.

Lord, change my heart, help my focus to be other-centered instead of self-centered. Transform me to be genuinely happy for the blessings you provide for others and show me the ways you have provided for me to be a vessel for some of those blessings. Help me to see the big picture and when things don't go my way, help me to remember that you promise to work all things for the good of those who love you and are called according to your purposes - all the people, not just me.

Friday, August 13, 2010


It has been a LONG time since I have written here, far too long. I have a reason, but it's not a very good one. Put quite simply, I have been avoiding it. My life in the past few months has been crazy and to be honest, I have not been very content. I have been obedient. I have trusted God with the big picture, but I have spent my days worrying about the little things and wondering exactly how we are going to get to the big picture. I have reasoned, "How can I write a blog about contentment when I have been anything but?" But truthfully, this is probably where I should have been all along. I forgot the second word of my title - project. That means this is an on-going process. I am still learning to be content and I am sure it will be a life-long process.

As I think about my first post, I am reminded of why I started this blog in the first place. I missed writing and the unique way God would speak to me as I wrote. I wish I had held onto that instead of thinking I had some wisdom to impart on anyone who might read this. So if there is any wisdom, it is this - I am an imperfect being with a God who loves me. I do not have all the answers but I have a God who does. I make mistakes every single day but God invites me back into His presence everytime I stray. I am constantly working on this project. There will be days I am more content than others but I know that without God, I don't have a chance.

Friday, May 28, 2010


This past year I have become a bit consumed with eating healthy and exercise. I was wondering yesterday why it has become so easy for me to haul my patooty out of bed so early in the morning to exercise when it is sometimes so hard to find the time to spend with God. It hit me as I was doing my workout. Two things keep me hitting the elliptical day after day, tangible results that I can control. The more I exercise, the more I can physically see those results on my body and I have complete control over those results. I can choose to work my body or not. The weeks I am better at sticking to my routine, I see a better return for my time. When I start to feel flabby or tired because I have eaten the wrong things, I have nobody to blame but myself.

But spending time with God is different. True, the more time I spend with Him I see results, but those results are sometimes less tangible and I definitely do not control them. As you may have guessed, control is something of an issue with me.

This was an important realization for me to come to because it helped me to see that I try to do the same thing with God that I can do with exercise. I try to control His favor by my good deeds. But I need to understand that is not possible. "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God - not by works, so that no one can boast." Thank you, Paul for the reminder. I have done nothing to earn my salvation and I can do NOTHING to earn God's favor. He gives it according to His grace, exceedingly, abundantly, according to His grace.

I find such great comfort in that this morning because if I can do nothing to earn His grace than there is also nothing I can do to make His grace disappear. God loves me and He has an amazing plan for my life, a plan filled with wonderful things. It may not be my plan and it may go in a completely different direction than I would have thought. But I know it is the BEST plan for my life and I choose to trust Him.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010


Isaiah 26:3 says, "You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you." Two words jump out at me as I read this verse, keep and steadfast. In a way, they mean the same thing don't they? Steadfast means to persevere, to keep on. I have learned to have moments of God's peace but what I desire most is to keep that peace always. To do that, I need to learn to keep my eyes on Him, to keep my trust focused on the only place it ever needs to be.

Why is that so hard to remember sometimes? I want to look at my circumstances. I want to trust in the people around me. But my circumstances and the people in my life can never offer the peace that God can give. Only He can fill my heart from within with His assurance that He has things under control. The Creator of the Universe holds my life in His hands. WOW - I don't need to be afraid of anything.

So God, I ask for your help today. I want to experience this perfect peace you offer. Please help me to remain steadfast because I trust in YOU!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


It's easy in Christian circles to get caught up in speaking this language only other believers understand. We talk about being saved and praying in the spirit and unbelievers have no idea what we are talking about. This used to really bother me and I would always try to come up with ways to tone down my speech so others would take me seriously. But the truth is, some things are hard to explain if you haven't experienced them. How do you tell someone who has never felt that feeling of being filled with the Holy Spirit how it feels to be enveloped with God's peace, guidance, comfort and assurance. How do you explain to someone what it sounds like to hear God speaking directly to you?

Perhaps Paul said it best in 1 Corinthians 1:18 when he said, "the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God." I watched Meredith Vieira this morning on the Today show try to make a fool of a fellow believer. This man, James King, had been part of a rescue effort to find a missing girl in Florida. After 4 days of searching Mr. King said the Lord led him directly to the missing girl. "And you brought some stuff with you to help you out as well, besides the Lord's guidance," Ms. Vieira said with a chuckle. As if the Lord's guidance couldn't possibly have led to the girl's discovery. My heart fell at the animosity in her voice. Perhaps, I was reading too much into it but it seemed all to familiar.

Every believer listening knew EXACTLY what Mr. King was talking about but to everyone else, he seems like a fool. Well, I say - you be a fool James King!!! And I thank him for the reminder that it doesn't matter what others think. Only the truth matters. Too many times I get caught up in wondering what my unbelieving friends are going to think about the way I speak about God. Will they think I'm a whack job? Will they think I am unintelligent? How many times have I kept my mouth closed when the Holy Spirit was urging me to speak because I was afraid? But this morning, James King went on national television and spoke the truth. Will there be some who think he is a nut case? Most definitely. Is it going to matter when he stands in front of his Savior and hears the words, "Well done my good and faithful servant?" I think not.

I want to encourage you to watch the footage of the interview here:
Perhaps you too will be encouraged by this man's courage.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


The book of Nehemiah is one of those books in the Old Testament I don't turn to very often. But, I spent a little time there this morning and I was touched by what I read. The book of Nehemiah recounts the third return to Jerusalem after captivity and tells of the rebuilding of the city walls. Chapter 8 brings us to a gathering of the people where Ezra, the scribe is reading to them from the Book of the Law. Verse 9 says, "Then Nehemiah the governor, Ezra the priest and scribe, and the Levites who were instructing the people said to them all, 'This day is sacred to the Lord your God. Do not mourn and weep.' For the people had been weeping as they listened to the words of the Law."

I can symapathize with their weeping. I can imagine what they were feeling. Here they are, listening to God's word, God's law and they had not been living up to it. Have you ever been there? Have you ever been confronted with God's perfect standard only to realize you come up short, very short? Doesn't it make you want to weep at times? Have you felt that conviction deep in your soul and felt ashamed? I have.

But Nehemiah tells them it is not a time for mourning and weeping, this is a sacred day. He tells them to "Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks." He says, "Do not grieve for the joy of the Lord is your strength." He speaks of joy when they are reeling with guilt. It's a good lesson.

Guilt is such a powerful tool of satan. He loves to take that conviction, that prompting from the Holy Spirit to make a positive change, and turn it into something which cripples us. He wants us to dwell on the thing we've done wrong, reminding us how awful we are, what terrible sinners we are. Maybe if he gets us thinking all those negative thoughts we won't have the time or the inclination to work on the change part.

But Nehemiah reminds us the joy of the Lord is our strength. We don't have to weep and mourn because God provides the way to salvation. And we have it so much easier than these Old Testament Jews because we have the rest of the story, we have Jesus. Romans 8:1 tells us "there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ." We have freedom from the law and freedom from our sinful nature. Does that mean we no longer sin? Of course not, but our sin should not be our focus, our relationship with God should be and in Him is forgiveness and love and joy.

So the next time you feel that tug on your heart, that conviction from the Holy Spirit urging you to change in some area of your life, I want to encourage you to find the joy in that. Don't turn to the guilt satan will try to fill you with. Be joyful that you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you. It is a sacred day. Let the joy of the Lord be your strength.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


I've been thinking alot about snow lately, probably because I have been completely surrounded by it for almost 2 weeks now. I grew up in Southern California so snow is not something I am terribly familiar with. Now that I live where it snows, I am hoping the novelty of it never wears off. Snow amazes me. I am bewildered by the fact that something can be at once so delicate yet so powerful. But the thing I am intrigued by the most is a single snowflake. I was 19 years old before I actually saw snow falling from the sky. As I looked at my glove that first time, I was surprised by what I saw. I had no idea that snowflakes really look the way we are taught to cut them from paper in school. I now have a book sitting on my coffee table filled with the most beautiful pictures of snowflakes. I could look at it all day long. But the thing that touches me the most is that of all the billions and billions of snowflakes that fall, no two are alike. Is there any better evidence for the existence of God? Who but the Master Creator could come up with all of those amazing designs?

But there is something else about snow that blows me away and that is it's pure whiteness. There is nothing so breathtaking as looking out the window after a snowstorm and viewing the untouched snow. When the sun is shining you have to shield your eyes from the brightness. Isaiah 1:18 says, "Come now, lets us reason together," says the Lord. "Though your skins are like scarlet, they shall be white as snow; though they are as red as crimson, they shall be like wool." And as I look out at the vastness of the snow surrounding me, I imagine that each little snowflake that falls is one of our sins which God has transformed. And not only has He turned them white, but He has turned each one into something new, something beautiful. No longer is it a red mark against us to condemn us. It has been transformed to reflect His glory. He takes our weaknesses and shows the world His power through His forgiveness.

I see this reflected in my own life. I was a sinner. I did some things I am ashamed of. And though I still sin, that is not what defines me anymore because Jesus died for those sins and He has made me a new creation. It continues to astound me. The person I am now would be unrecognizable to the person I once was. It is something I could never have done on my own. Only the Master Creator could have done it. Just like the snowflake, I am unique. He has given me gifts and talents that nobody else has and just like that snowflake, they are beautiful when used for his purpose.

Friday, February 5, 2010


I love lists and schedules. For me, there is little as satisfying as seeing my to do list at the end of the day with everything crossed off. I love that visual evidence of a productive day. Sometimes, if I complete a task that wasn't on my list, I will add it just so I can cross it off. I know, it's kind of a sickness. But, sometimes in my quest to get things done, I forget there is more to a job than its completion. Sometimes the satisfaction of a task is in the task itself.

Jesus' main complaint with the Pharisees was that they were simply going through the motions of following the law. There was no true motive beyond their zealousness other than the satisfaction at the end of the day that they had done what they were supposed to do. But there was so much they were missing. They were missing the intent behind the law. They were missing the love behind the law and they were missing the fact that the law was designed to change their hearts and make them see their need for a savior. As a result, they missed Him when he was standing right in front of them.

This makes me wonder how much I miss with my zeal to cross things off my list. Sure, I get my Bible Study done, but do I take the time to really absorb what I am studying? I feed my family dinner, but am I feeding their hearts and their souls? The house gets clean but am I cleansing my soul daily? There are many days I need to slow down. I need to throw out the list and remember what is important. Maybe we will eat pizza for dinner, but my son will know he can come to me anytime for homework help. Maybe the dishes will sit in the sink but my daughter and I will enjoy some cuddle time. And maybe I won't get my Bible Study done today but my husband will feel he is a priority.

I will always love my lists and schedules. They are the things which help me maintain control. But as I write these words, I realize that is the very thing God is trying to teach me. He is in control, not me. I need to trust that and look for the ways I can serve Him, even if it's not on my list.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


Over and over in scripture we read the Lord will come back like a thief in the night. The gospels show Jesus telling his disciples and all of us to be on our guard and be ready.

Are you ready? If the Lord were to show up on your doorstep this minute would you be ready or would you be thinking, "Wait, I was going to work on this problem and I was going to forgive that person before you came." My answer to the question is, "It depends on the day." Sometimes it depends on the hour. I may be ready one minute and not ready the next. But Jesus tells us we should always be ready.

In Luke, Jesus uses a parable about a servant overseeing his master's property. When the master is long in coming back, the servant becomes complacent and begins to slack off on his duties. I can so relate to that story. Sometimes, I honestly forget the Lord is coming back and I get consumed with the things of this world and neglect the things I should really be working on. But I don't want this attitude. I want to be ready.

As I thought about this, I thought of a person who always has a clean house. Surely you know someone like this. You can show up at her house with no notice and everything is spotless as if you called weeks ago to announce your visit. These are the same people who take your glass and put it in the dishwasher before you've even set it down after your last sip. You know what these people have going for them? They're always ready. It may be alot of work to keep their house clean but they are willing to do the work because the payoff is huge. They can entertain on a moment's notice. They can relax on the weekend because there isn't an entire house to clean.

I want to be like that with my spiritual life. A couple of years ago, I studied the book of Acts. Before studying this book, I was a bit put off by Paul's attitude. I thought he was arrogant and proud, always telling us we should act like him. But after studying Acts I realized the reason for this. Paul was always ready. That doesn't mean he was perfect, but he was always examining himself and asking God where he could improve. He kept short accounts with God.

Keeping short accounts with God is like the woman with the eternally clean house. Why is her house always clean? She is constantly cleaning up small messes. Something spills, she cleans it up. The mail comes, she sorts it and throws out the junk. We can answer Jesus' call to always be ready if we will apply the same concepts to our spiritual lives. When we tell a lie, we immediately ask for forgiveness. When we disobey God, we go to Him right away. We are going to screw up from time to time, not one of us is perfect but if we will remember to spend time each day, confessing our sins to God and asking Him to show us where we can do better, we will keep those short accounts with God and we will be ready.

Thursday, January 21, 2010


At the National Postal Museum, there is a collection of rare and valuable stamps. The stamps which hold the most value are the ones which are mistakes - an airplane or a ship printed upside down, perforations in the wrong spots - all of these mistakes make the stamps worth more money. This got me thinking, what makes the mistakes more valuable? Frankly, I had a hard time seeing the beauty in the mistakes and I think if I were to have possessed one of these rare finds, it might have found its way to the trash, considered useless. Yet it is those very mistakes which hold collectors in awe. For in the mistakes, we are able to see the beauty of perfection.

It is the same with us. Some of my most valuable times with the Lord have been after I have made a mistake. In my mistakes, I see the beauty of His perfection. In my mistakes, He comes to me and teaches me and lifts me up ever so sweetly and shows me the way to go. For in my weakness, He is strong. In my failures, I learn valuable lessons. In my fall, I see His grace and the mistakes become very valuable.

Not that I should keep on sinning as Paul points out so well in Romans 6. But I am glad to have these stamps in my collection to remind me of God's love for me. I was speaking to my daughter this morning about the story in Luke of the sinful woman who washes Jesus' feet with her tears and dries them with her hair. The Pharisee whose home Jesus is visiting is appalled at this display and the fact that Jesus would allow this sinful woman to touch him. Jesus rebukes him with a parable about two men who owe a debt. One is substantially larger than the other yet both debts are canceled. Jesus asks who will be more grateful and the answer of course is the one whose debt was larger, the one with the most messed up stamps in his collection.

So what does your stamp collection look like? Do you push the mistakes to the side because looking at them causes pain and guilt? Or do you see them for what they are, opportunities to thank God for his amazing gift of forgiveness. Do you look at your mistakes and marvel at the greatness of God? Are you amazed that a holy and righteous God loves YOU and wants to have a relationship with you? Well he does, mistakes and all.

Friday, January 15, 2010


In High School much was said about someone's reputation. You certainly didn't want to be someone with a bad reputation. And it was always comforting to have friends you knew would defend your reputation.
What about God's reputation? Do we ever think about defending God's reputation? Moses thought about God's reputation. This is probably the thing which sticks out the most to me in Moses' relationship with God. When the Israelites rebelled against God for the umpteenth time God responded by saying, "How long will these people treat me with contempt? How long will they refuse to believe in me, in spite of all the miraculous signs I have performed among them? I will strike them down with a plague and destroy them, but I will make you into a nation greater and stronger than they." (Numbers 14:11) Moses had several options at this point. He could have thought about himself saying, "You know what God, I'm getting kind of tired of these people too? Let's start all over with a fresh batch we can mold the way we want." He could have even been compassionate and thought of the people, begging God's forgiveness and mercy. Instead, Moses thinks of God. He tells God he is worried what will happen if God destroys His people and the Egyptians hear about it. He was worried they would think God was not powerful enough to do what He promised and so He wiped the people out instead. In short, Moses was worried about God's reputation and because of this he convinced God to relent and not destroy the people but to forgive them.
How do you protect God's reputation? Do you stand up for Him? Do you talk about the great things He has done in your life? Do you defend Him when you hear someone speaking a falsehood about Him. When there is a major earthquake destroying thousands and people say, "How could a loving God let something like this happen," do you have a response?
In a world filled with those who are looking for every opportunity to discredit God, what will you do today to stand up for Him?

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


The Lord's Prayer has been at the forefront of my mind lately. I am involved in two separate Bible Studies right now and it just so happens this was the week's topic for both studies. The Lord's Prayer is one I grew up reciting, but I am sad to tell you that was all it was, a recitation. I never really thought about the words I was saying. When I got serious about my relationship with God, I shunned all the recited prayers I had learned as a child, including The Lord's Prayer. I wanted my prayers to come from my heart, not mindless words that just flowed from my mouth. I don't think I was wrong in my general sentiment but I was wrong to discount the significance of this most precious prayer Jesus shared with his disciples.

Luke 11 recounts Jesus' disciples asking him, "Lord, teach us to pray." How many times have you heard this or even said this? Maybe we don't say those words exactly but our meaning is the same. We say, "I don't know where to begin," or "I don't know what to pray for." Maybe we are worried that we don't have eloquent enough words or we don't know enough about the Bible. In all these things what we are saying is, "I don't know how." Well lucky for us, Jesus' disciples asked him how. How can I ignore His answer, especially when it is so sweet and perfect and completely unlike the answer I expected?

The thing which strikes me most about Jesus' prayer is its simplicity. Many times I feel I must fill my prayers with beautiful, holy sounding words so God will know how serious I am. The prayer Jesus offers is short. Just 8 little lines in the NIV version of Luke, 34 words. Oh but what is said in those 34 words!!! In 8 lines we are shown the heart of God.

The prayer starts with intimacy. Jesus acknowledges God as Father. This not only speaks to our relationship with God but it places the focus of our prayer where it belongs, on God. How many times do I start my prayers with I? I need, I want, I can't.

Then Jesus acknowledges God's sovereignty. "Your kingdom come." Not my plan, Lord, but yours. The key to my favorite subject - contentment.

The rest of the prayer points to three aspects of God's character. He is our provider, our savior and our protector. God loves us and wants to be these things for us. He wants to provide our daily needs. He knows what they are before we even ask. He promises to forgive us of our sins and He will give us the power to forgive others. And He promises to protect us from evil and to guide us in the path of righteousness. Jesus shows us through His prayer that we should be bold in coming before the Lord and asking for these things.

I am so grateful for the perfect timing of God in having these two studies coincide with each other and showing me The Lord's prayer in a new light. I am so grateful for His Word which provides all the answers for life. Thank you Lord for showing me so plainly how to pray. Funny, I never thought to ask. I am glad the disciples did.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


Seriously, a blog? That's what I keep asking myself when the idea pops into my head. And who will want to read it? That's another one. Maybe nobody. It doesn't really matter. I used to enjoy writing. I was privileged to have the opportunity to write and deliver devotions each week for several Mom's groups I was involved in and to occasionally deliver a message for Bible Study. I miss that. I miss those times of sitting down at my computer and hearing God speak to me. I suppose I don't need to be involved in a ministry to write. The truth is I got way more out of those devotions then any of the audiences I delivered them to. And that is why I have chosen this outlet to begin writing again. I cherish those times with the Lord and the things He teaches me during those times. So, even if nobody chooses to read these posts I know it will be a special time with my savior.
So why the name, "The Contentment Project"? As I look back over all the devotions I have written throughout the years, contentment seems to be a common theme. If you have ever attended Community Bible Study, you know that each month there is a group brunch or luncheon and at these gatherings there is always a question to answer. At one of these brunches the question was, "What are you learning?" I thought long and hard before answering, "I am learning to be content." Six years later, I am still learning. Contentment isn't an overnight epiphany, it is an everyday choice. Thus the project part of my title. This is my lifelong project, to be content, to follow God wherever He leads me with the assurance that His plan is the best plan.
Below is a copy of one of my earlier devotions. It was, in fact, delivered at Community Bible Study in Palm Desert shortly after the above mentioned brunch. I hope you will enjoy it.


Phillipians 4:6-7 says, "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus." Aren't those beautiful words? I remember the first time I really heard those words. I was visiting a friend who had just had her second miscarriage in a row 20 weeks into her pregnancy. As we visited she told me how God had shown her this verse and had filled her with this peace that transcends all understanding. I had gone there to comfort her but I ended up being comforted myself with this amazing concept that was so new to me. This concept that even when our lives are crazy, even when tragedy strikes and there is no worldly reason for it, we can be filled with peace, God's peace.
If we keep reading in Philippians, Paul says, "I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want." Through our study in Acts, we are beginning to see the truth of these words in Paul’s life. In fact, he writes these words from jail. The man is in jail and he is talking to us about being content.
Maybe some of you have heard of a man named Horatio Spafford. He was a successful lawyer in the 1870's who wrote one of the most famous hymns of all time. Horatio Spafford, like Paul had discovered the secret to being content. He had invested heavily in Real Estate but the Chicago Fire of 1871 wiped out his investments. Shortly before that, his son had died. All this had put a huge strain on the family and Mr. Spafford decided his family was in great need of a rest. So he planned a trip to take his wife and 4 daughters to Europe. Because of some last minute business, he was unable to leave as scheduled but rather than postpone the trip for the whole family, he sent his wife and daughters on ahead of him, planning to follow a few days later. Unfortunately, the ship they were traveling on was struck by another ship and it sank. Only Mrs. Spafford survived. Horatio Spafford got on a boat to travel to England to be with his grieving wife. Along the way, the ship passed the spot where his family's ship had gone down. The captain stopped the boat to give Mr. Spafford some time. It was there that he wrote the words to the hymn “It is Well With My Soul.” It is well with my soul. This man who had already lost a son, virtually all of his money and now 4 daughters wrote the words “It is well with my soul.”
When peace like a river attendeth my way
when sorrows like sea billows roll
whatever my lot, thou hast taught me to say,
It is well, it is well with my soul
I think he had learned the secret to being content in all circumstances. So what is this secret? If we keep reading, Paul tells us. Phillipians 4:13 says, "I can do everything through him who gives me strength." That's it, that's the secret. When we rely on God and not on ourselves, submitting to his will, we can do anything, even be content. And we can allow God's peace, that perfect peace which transcends all understanding to enter our lives.