It is Well with My Soul – A Farewell To My Dad

By Patrick Hawthorne




In honor of my dad who passed away on December 22nd of this year, I am re-posting this article from February 2015.  “It is Well With My Soul,” was his favorite song.



Stepping onto the gang plank, a fresh wave of sorrow washed over Horatio.  So much grief; so much sorrow.  How much can one man endure? Tears formed like small pools at the bottom of his eyes.  Once the dam broke, there would be no stopping the flood that was sure to follow.

Thinking back over the past two years, Horatio Spafford had endured so much pain in his life.  First, losing his son to a tragic death, he then lost most of his investments to the great Chicago fire of 1871.  And now, he was headed to England to join his sweet Anna in saying goodbye to their four daughters who had died tragically at sea. With a sigh, Horatio headed to his cabin.

It was just over a week ago that Horatio bid Anna and his daughters bon voyage as they sailed to England.  He had every intention of traveling with them but a last minute business deal came up causing him to stay in the states a few extra days. His new plan was to meet up with the girls in England where they could work at putting the tragedies of the last couple of years behind them.  It was to be a festive occasion; one where they could get a much needed rest.  Never could he have imagined that he would be saying a final goodbye to his sweet little girls.

Several days into his voyage, Horatio was summoned to the bridge by the Captain.  With deep sadness, the Captain shared that, after careful reckoning, he believed they were approaching the site where the ship carrying his wife and daughters had sank.  Only his wife Anna survived to make it to England.

Looking out across the vast watery grave, with the spillway to his tears opened, Horatio said a final goodbye to his girls.  No one can know the true depth of Horatio Spafford’s grief. Yet he gave us a glimpse of his heart when he penned the famous words later put to music, “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.

Why do certain tragedies occur?  I would love to give you a satisfying answer, but it would be futile in the midst of your sorrow.  However, I do know this; our Father will never leave us nor forsake us.  Because of this I can confidently declare, “No matter my lot I must continue to say, “It is well, it is well with my soul.’” Be blessed.

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Posted in Christian, writing
22 comments on “It is Well with My Soul – A Farewell To My Dad
  1. Lady Quixote says:

    I am so sorry for your loss, Patrick. Although you know where your father is, still the loss can cut so deep.

    I love this song, too. Forty years ago my son and daughter, who were 5 and 2 years old at the time, were abducted from me. During the 2 years and 7 months that my children were lost to me, before I finally got them back, my grief was nearly unbearable.

    One day I poured my heart out to an older Christian woman. This song was playing in the background. When I finished speaking, the woman gently told me the story behind the song. And I began to understand how it could be well with my soul, even while my heart was shattered.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Jules says:

    *hugs* prayers that His love will surround and comfortable youbnow and always.


  3. Butch Dean says:

    Patrick, my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.


  4. Beautifully said, Pat. Love you!


  5. Neta Monroe says:

    Beautiful Your dad was an awesome man, he and your mom both are such an inspiration to others. He will be missed, until we all meet again. Neta Monroe

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Wally Fry says:

    I’m really sorry to hear this Patrick many thoughts and prayers.


  7. anitvan says:

    I’m so very sorry for your loss, Patrick. May our God of all comfort be your rock and strength at this time.

    Was your dad an influence on your faith life? At some point I’d love to hear your remembrances of him, if you’d care to share.

    Much love and prayers for you and your family, and a blessed Christmas to you all.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. SLIMJIM says:

    Patrick my condolences


  9. I’m sorry for your loss, Patrick. What a beautiful post and a sweet tribute to your dad.

    Sometimes when a life is well lived and you know they are now in good hands, rather than sadness, there is a sense of peace, even perhaps some moments of joy. My own father’s passing tossed me all about, but I still could not shake the feelings of peace and comfort that came to me, His peace. His comfort. All is well with my soul, indeed.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Lyn Howell says:

    My dear friend – I am so sorry for your loss. My heart goes out to you and your family. I know first hand what it is to loose a loved one during the holiday. I do not have any words to say that could give you any comfort during this time except to say I know that you know he is in a much happier place waiting for all of his loved ones there. We will all be together again soon. I love you my friend.


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