There’s a quiet, indescribable confidence sweeps over you when you know
Life is often uncertain, its path is strewn with obstacles and potholes, the valleys are deep and life’s hillsides can be steep and rocky, but if you’re safe and know it, your soul can be confident.
Born in 1842 Glasgow, George Matheson was the eldest of eight. He was educated at the University of Glasgow where he graduated first in classics, logic and philosophy.
At the age of twenty he became totally blind, but he held to his resolve to enter the ministry, and gave himself to theological and historical study.
In 1879 (age 37) the University of Edinburgh conferred upon him the honorary degree of D.D.. In 1890, he became a fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. He died suddenly at the age of 64 on the 28th of August 1906 in Edinburgh and is buried in the Glasgow Necropolis.
He never married.
On June 6, 1882, George Matheson, wrote,
“I was at that time alone, it was the day of my sister’s marriage . . . Something happened to me, which was known only to myself, and which caused me the most severe mental suffering. The hymn was the fruit of that suffering.”
The hymn he referred to is his own: O Love That Wilt Not Let Me Go
Matheson’s suffering may have stemmed from the reality of his continuing loss, for his fiancée broke off their engagement when she learned he would soon be completely blind. It may have been facing the forthcoming loss of his own sister’s closeness, who had studied Greek and Hebrew so she could assist him in his sermon preparation. We’re not certain.
What I find heartening is that Mr. Matheson chose to do over a century ago what you and I can chose to do today. He turned his attention to focus on the love of God and the cross of Christ. As he did, these intensely personal, vulnerable thoughts found their way into ink on paper, and then into song. I’m thankful for them. Near despair surrendered to promise and victory as he let his Savior restore him and fill him with hope.
If Jesus is your Savior you are SAFE. You can rest.
Your life can be —will be— fruitful in Him.
He’s never going to let you go. Never.
This is one of my favorite hymns (I only have a hundred of them or so).
Start the video and follow the text while David Phelps sings ~
O Love that will not let me go,
I rest my weary soul in Thee;
I give Thee back the life I owe,
That in Thine ocean depths its flow
May richer, fuller be.
O Light that foll’west all my way,
I yield my flick’ring torch to Thee;
My heart restores its borrowed ray,
That in Thy sunshine’s blaze its day
May brighter, fairer be.
O Joy that seekest me through pain,
I cannot close my heart to Thee;
I trace the rainbow through the rain,
And feel the promise is not vain
That morn shall tearless be.
O Cross that liftest up my head,
I dare not ask to fly from Thee;
I lay in dust life’s glory dead,
And from the ground there blossoms red
Life that shall endless be.
O Love that will not let me go —