A Weekly Devotional with Susan Daniel “We look away from the natural realm, and we fasten our gaze onto Jesus who birthed faith within us and who leads us forward into faith’s perfection. His example is this: Because his heart was focused on the joy of knowing that you would be His, he endured the agony of the cross and conquered its humiliation, and now sits exalted at the right hand of the throne of God!” Hebrews 12:2 TPT Considering the words of the song penned by Horatio Spafford,”It is Well with My Soul,” one can only imagine what it was like for this man to experience such grief and distress. There are times in our own lives when we experience distress, and we rightly also experience the grief of our losses. Within these times, we can also choose to tell our souls that It is well – in spite of how we feel. The words of this song are a declaration that bypasses how one feels because we know that we know; our God is never changing and always present. We too can choose to say in the middle of the darkness, in the middle of the questions – Thou has taught me to say, “”It is well; it is well with my soul.” This declaration does not change our circumstances; rather, it changes us in them. It invites our loving, Heavenly Father’s presence – though, in truth, He is always with us. When we seek Him and choose to fasten our gaze onto Jesus, we become more aware of Him and there, in that place, we know His comfort and His grace to endure and be at peace. We often reflect on what it was like for Jesus to be so brutally beaten and punished and then to die so alone on a cross for us. We are told that it was the joy set before Him that held His focus as He endured it all. We cannot take the emotion and feelings out of this – yes joy was set before Him, but He still experienced it all, and I imagine He reminded Himself often it is well with my soul. I have been thinking of what it was like for the Father to witness all of this. What intense, horrific pain that must have been. What agony for them both! It was the Father’s will that Jesus should come and be a sacrifice for us – that we might have eternal life. He longs for us to be with Him for all eternity, and this was the joy He focused on during this horrific time. He loves us, oh He loves us indeed. Imagine His delight when we turn our focus to Him and declare, Father, I have no idea what’s happening, I cannot make sense of this, and still I want You to know that I love You. I know You are sovereign, and I will declare, “It Is well with my soul”. Though this topic is heavy, there is joy in it. He is our future hope; He is an ever-present help in all of our troubled times. He IS with us; He loves us and delights in us. Let us lift our eyes toward Him, let us raise our voices together and declare that He alone is our God, He is love, and He is good – because it is His nature to be so. But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Susan Joy Daniel Regional Director Qld, NSW/ACT Study The aifc CHC51015 Diploma of Counselling. The course is contextualised not to contradict the bible. Share this Facebook Twitter Pinterest Where to get help 24/7 Helplines Lifeline: 13 11 14 Kids Helplines: 1800 551 800 Mensline: 1300 789 978 Beyond Blue: 1300 22 46 36 Headspace: 1800 650 890 Talk to your doctor and see a mental health professional. Visit CCAA to search for a Christian counsellor near you.