Our thoughts and ideas fly to and fro. There is hardly anything fixed or constant in them. The argumentation for this one are the reasons against for the other. Even those things that seemed quite stable and permanent for a while, begin to shake and move after just a short reprieve. In this constant fluctuation and uncertain foundations our soul is constantly endangered to loose all grounding and firm footing. That is why the word is so true: For it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace (Heb 13:9 KJV). This is the best we can hope for our friends – that their hearts be established on the firm foundation of God’s truth and conviction of the biblical revelation. If we have the Word of Jesus Christ and still not come to peace and quiet, it is like a hidden bug gnawing away at our heart and causing us radical distress. We won’t find joyful peace until our heart is firmly anchored in Jesus Christ and his blessed salvation. Through faith in him all fear of calamity and death dissipate and all weakness parts. We look into the future, which might look bleak and glum, but his promises assure us of the coming bliss and deliverance. That is the strong confidence the Corinthians share with all Christians. The testimony about Christ resided mightily amongst them just like a firm rock in the gushing sea. This word granted them insight, but also inexpressible joy and the firm conviction that they were well taken care of and that their eternal salvation was in good hands with Jesus Christ – their Lord and God. That is why the apostle St. Paul was so happy and grateful for this gracious blessings amongst his people.
We bow our knees before you oh Lord and God. We bring before you all our sin, care and anxiety, but also our innermost desires and passions. Forgive us all our transgressions and iniquities. Forgive us our sins of haste and oversight. Forgive us were we did not listen to you and our ears were blocked for your gentle admonitions. Remove all guilt and shame from us and our souls as we seek your grace and peace. We thrust all our burdens onto you. Pacify our hearts. Bring to rest our thoughts and wondering ideas. You know what is good for us. You know how to keep us from collapsing and despairing. As our thoughts are in conflict, battling it out in excuses and accusations, while ever at a loss to understand and ground themselves, we plead you to grant us the one thing that is crucial. Give us the fullness of your peace, that the world doesn’t know and can’t give. Amen. (Arper-Zillessen)
When peace, like a river, attendeth my way, When sorrows like sea billows roll; Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say, It is well, it is well, with my soul. Refrain: It is well, it is well, With my soul, with my soul, It is well, it is well, with my soul.
Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come, Let this blest assurance control, That Christ has regarded my helpless estate, And hath she’d His own blood for my soul. Refrain: It is well, it is well, With my soul, with my soul, It is well, it is well, with my soul.
My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought! My sin, not in part but the whole, It was nailed trough his cross, and I bear it no more, Bless the Lord, bless the Lord, O my soul! Refrain: It is well, it is well, With my soul, with my soul, It is well, it is well, with my soul.
This is a rather free translation of Wilhelm Löhe’s devotion for Wednesday after the eighteenth Sunday after the high holiday and festival of the Holy Trinity. It is found on Pg. 344 in Lob sei Dir ewig, o Jesu! (Eternal Praise to you o Jesus!) edited by A. Schuster and published in the Freimund Verlag, Neuendettelsau 1949.