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All is well

I love music.  I always have.  When I was a little girl and couldn’t fall asleep, I would lie in bed and sing myself to sleep. It’s a little embarrassing to think of my parents hearing me singing in bed, but it made me happy.

As I was studying things to do to reduce stress, I found a list that included listening to music, which I’m sure is helpful, but for me, it is 10 times more helpful to be a part of the music.  Whether singing to the car radio, or playing an instrument. I used to play the piano as a teen, in order to work out my frustrations.

Music really can be therapeutic.  In church I was asked to share some thoughts on my favorite hymn, and although I really don’t have a favorite hymn (I like lots of them for lots of different reasons) I choose to talk about a pioneer song, “Come, Come Ye Saints.”

This song was written specifically about the trials and hardships of the pioneers and early members of the church who sacrificed so much for their religious freedom, but also for the building of and survival of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  When I think of the final anthem of this song “All is well,” the first thing I think is “all was not well.”  They had just been chased from their homes, had property stolen from them.  Many had been physically assaulted, and had suffered sicknesses and injuries.  Many women had already lost their husbands to the violence, and many others died from illnesses and exposure.  The beginning of this journey west, was a dark, scary and difficult time.  But it was also a time of great bravery and hope for a better future.  It was a huge hardship for those who chose to stay with the church, and I believe that this song helped to give them courage to continue.

I have more than a few ancestors who were a part of this pioneer trek west.  Two of them, Gardner and Sarah Snow gave a record of their travels. It reads

In February the Exodus began. Two more grandchildren died. The women walked, rain or shine, until arrival at Winter Quarters. Twenty-two Bishops were called, Gardner being one of them. This was a sad time, for outside of Winter Quarters were 300 graves. One was their daughter-in-law’s, which resulted in Sarah raising two more grandchildren.”

I can’t even imagine having to bury and leave behind so many people, including family members.

I think this song was meant to lift their spirits and help them to have the courage to keep going each and every day.  I think it can do the same for us, in the trials that we face also.

The second verse of this song can be especially meaningful in our world.

It starts

Why should we mourn, or think our lot is hard? ‘Tis not so, all is right”

When I look at the “lot” of these pioneer ancestors, I think they have every reason to say that they have it hard.

I can’t tell you how many times in my own life, I have felt like my load was just too big to carry .  I learned not to ask the question “Why me?”  of the Lord, when my trials become more that I think that I can bear, because I have talked to so many other people who go through trials just as difficult or more so than mine.  If I ever dare to say “why me”, I have to remind myself “why not me?” Why would the Lord have me avoid the trials of earth life that are meant to stretch us, and strengthen us.  Each person on this earth has their own set of difficulties that they have to deal with. The difference in how we come through is how we look at it.  Can we say in the midst of trials, “Why should we mourn, or think our lot is hard?”

The next line in the song,

Why should we think to earn a great reward, if we now shun the fight.”

Sometimes it really is a fight against the evil spirit that wants us to give up, and give in to despair.  But unlike the pioneers, our fight is not physical, our fight is spiritual, mental and emotional.  And sometimes the “great reward” that I want to earn is just to be in a place of peace, for at least a little bit of time, and ultimately to be living with God, in a place of ultimate peace.

The song continues

Gird up your loins”

Meaning, get up and get ready. Choose to stand up and face the challenge that you probably can’t avoid anyway.

Fresh courage take”

Find the courage inside of you to choose to do something – what that something is will be different for each of us, in our own trials, and the most important part is remembering that

Our God will never us forsake.”

Even if we are in a place of sadness, that we can’t feel the spirit anymore, the Spirit is still there.  God will not leave us.  He has a plan for us.  And sometimes we just need to remember that He allowed us to be put into this situation, because He knows us well enough to trust in us to be able to overcome.

And soon we’ll have, this tale to tell.”

When do you tell that tale?  Long after the trial is over, and you can see the lessons that were learned, and the strength that was gained from the trial.  When the trial has past, and you have endured it well, then you can see that the trial may have actually been a blessing.  That is when you can proclaim

All is well, all is well.”

Whatever you might be going through right now, know that God is on your side and He will help you overcome.  Also know that He has put other people in your path to help you. Whether they be friends, family, counselors, doctors, teachers etc., let people in with the understanding that they may just be the angel that was sent to help you when you needed it most.

Laura

Ps: we would love to hear any stories you would like to share, on how you have overcome trials. Feel free to leave a comment or send us an email.

1 Comment

  1. You brought tears to my eyes when I read this post. As you know too well how music is,a great boost to our spirit s when we need it most. When this hymn was written it was at a time of great need to bolster the oppressed and persecuted saints while on their track to build Zion with nothing more than FAITH to carry them to their unseen destination “far away in the west.”

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