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2020-06-25 O Love That Wilt Not Let Me Go

George Matheson was only a teenager when he learned that his poor eyesight was deteriorating further.  Not to be denied, he continued straightaway with his plans to enroll in Glasgow University, and his determination led to his graduating at age nineteen.  But as he pursued graduate studies for Christian ministry, he became totally blind.  His sister joined ranks beside him, learning Greek and Hebrew to assist him in his studies, and he pressed faithfully on.  But his spirit collapsed when his fiancée, unwilling to be married to a blind man, broke their engagement and returned his ring.

George never married, and the pain of that rejection never totally left him.  Years later, his sister came to him, announcing her engagement.  He rejoiced with her, but his mind went back to his own heartache.  He consoled himself in thinking of God’s love which is never limited, never conditional, never withdrawn, and never uncertain.  Out of this experience it is said he wrote the hymn, O Love That Wilt Not Let Me Go, on June 6, 1882. 

Robert J. Morgan, Then Sings My Soul, 2003

Are you dealing with the loss a loved one?  Do you feel all alone and discouraged?  Has a friend or even a family member left you down?  Just remember that even when your closest friends disappoint you or even leave you, Jesus is always there.  He has promised never to leave or forsake His children.  And He never has, and He never will!  Meditate on the truth of this hymn this week.  Feel the pain but also the hope that Matheson expressed.  And be thankful for God's love that never lets us go.

38 And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. 39 No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8:38 (NLT)

O Love that wilt 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 follow'st 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 thro' 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.

*Devotion and music provided by Jane Cockrell

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