‘Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus

duck-taking-flightby Louisa M. R. Stead, 1882

‘Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just to take Him at His Word;
Just to rest upon His promise,
Just to know, “Thus saith the Lord.”

Refrain:
Jesus, Jesus, how I trust Him!
How I’ve proved Him o’er and o’er;
Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus!
Oh, for grace to trust Him more!

Oh, how sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just to trust His cleansing blood;
And in simple faith to plunge me
‘Neath the healing, cleansing flood!

Yes, ’tis sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just from sin and self to cease;
Just from Jesus simply taking
Life and rest, and joy and peace.

I’m so glad I learned to trust Thee,
Precious Jesus, Savior, Friend;
And I know that Thou art with me,
Wilt be with me to the end.

 

 

Louisa M. R. Stead (c. 1850-1917) was born in Dover England, and was converted at the age of nine. She came to the United States in 1871 and settled in Cincinnati, Ohio. Shortly thereafter, she attended a camp meeting in Urbana, Ohio, where she dedicated her life to missionary service, although poor health prevented her from being able to fulfill her commitment.

Louisa was married in 1875, and a daughter, Lily, was born to them. When their daughter was four years old, they went on a family outing to the beach. While eating their picnic lunch, they heard cries for help coming from the water. Louisa’s husband stood up and saw a boy struggling in the waves. He immediately went in to rescue the lad, but in his panic, the boy pulled his rescuer under water, and they both drowned while Louisa and her little girl looked on in horror. The words to “Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus” came in response to her struggle with this tragedy.

Shortly after her husband’s death, Louisa and Lily left for Cape Colony, South Africa, where Louisa worked as a missionary for fifteen years. She married Robert Wodehouse, a native of South Africa. The family was forced to return to the United States in 1895 due to her health. Wodehouse pastored a Methodist congregation during these years until, in 1900, they returned to the mission field, this time to the Methodist mission station at Umtali, Southern Rhodesia (present day Zimbabwe).

Hymnologist Kenneth Osbeck records a message sent back to the United States shortly after her arrival in Southern Rhodesia:

“In connection with the whole mission there are glorious possibilities, but one cannot, in the face of the peculiar difficulties, help but say, ‘Who is sufficient for these things?’ But with simple confidence and trust we may and do say, ‘Our sufficiency is of God.’”

Lily married a young man in Africa and continued her missionary work in South Rhodesia for many years. Louisa retired in 1911 because of ill health, though she remained in Africa. She passed away in 1917 at her home in Penkridge near the Mutambara Mission, fifty miles from Umtali. Following her death, it was recorded that Christians in South Rhodesia continued to sing her hymn in the local Shona language.

 

Information for this article came from Discipleship Ministries of the United Methodist Church.

Tea Time

Cup of Tea blue 2 (1)Before I sit to cup of tea,
I look the choices over.
A dozen or so blends I see,
Of some I’ve tasted never.

Old Earl Grey is not for me,
“I Love Lemon” lies,
Chamomile tastes like a tree
With cinna-stick surprise.

Then I behold with gladsome glee
The one that I like best,
And I sit down to cup of tea
And calmly take my rest.

 

January 14, 2002 ~ posted, though not written, in response to the Daily Prompt: Tea
© 2017 Angela Umphers Rueger – All Rights Reserved
Photo taken in Milton, Florida, 2017, for Encore! Old Pianos with a New Song

Flee As a Bird ~ Psalm 11

Flee as a bird

In the LORD put I my trust.
How say ye to my soul,
“Flee as a bird to your mountain”?  

Psalm 11:1

This verse is particularly applicable to my marriage and the counsel I’ve received lately on that subject. One counselor in particular has schooled me in all the reasons I have to leave my husband (i.e. flee to my mountain). Are the reasons legitimate? Yes, but I refuse to listen, for I have put my trust in the Lord, not in my husband.

My husband has failed me, and he will fail me again. I too have failed him and will do so yet again. We don’t fail because we want to; we fail because we are flawed human beings. But God is not like us. He is perfect, sinless, holy, righteous, faithful, and true. He cares about our marriage because He created it. I can trust Him with every part of my life, including my marriage, for He is working all things together for my good and His glory. If you were to read the pages of my journal, you would see me coming back to this same truth over and over again. Perhaps I sound like a broken record, but I need to hear it repeatedly because I tend to forget.

Dear reader, if you are married, chances are you have also felt like quitting on your marriage, or you do now, or you will eventually. Maintaining a strong and fulfilling marriage takes hard work. I can’t speak for everyone, but as for me, I had no earthly idea what I was getting into when I got married. But the harder the battle, the sweeter the victory. Conflict creates interest, as long as it doesn’t become the focus.

If you are unhappy in your marriage, perhaps it’s because you expect your spouse to make you happy. That is an unfair and selfish demand. Only Christ can fully, deeply, richly satisfy. I pray it does not take you as long to learn that as it did me.

I was going to keep this one to myself, but the Holy Spirit urged me to share, for He knows what needs are out there. I am not a marriage counselor, just someone who wants to encourage others to keep pressing on in the things that matter.

Written July 1, 2017
Photo taken on Skyline Drive, Virginia, 2014

 

Mountains Majesty

Thine, O LORD, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty: for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is Thine; Thine is the kingdom, O LORD, and Thou art exalted as head above all. Both riches and honor come of Thee, and thou reignest over all; and in Thine hand is power and might; and in Thine hand it is to make great, and to give strength unto all. Now therefore, our God, we thank Thee, and praise Thy glorious name. —1 Chronicles 29:11-13

mountains-virginiaStand and gaze
Mountain haze
Maker praise
For His ways
All our days

Glory be
Trinity
Unto Thee
Majesty
Bow the knee

 

© 2017 Angela Umphers Rueger – All Rights Reserved

July 14, 2017 — Mini Monoverse
2 stanzas of 5 3-syllable lines in a,a,a,a,a / b,b,b,b,b
It should tell a story, but that is not imperative.
If doubled, the rhyme scheme of the two additional stanzas is c,c,c,c,c / d,d,d,d,d.