It Is Well With My Soul - Hillsong - Story Behind the Song - Must Watch Video

Horacio Spafford was a man familiar with death and tragedy. The Spafford's were grieving over the death of their first son to Scarlett Fever when the great Chicago fire decimated the city. Horacio, a successful lawyer and real estate investor, lost everything.

After the fire, Horacio and his wife, Anna, were attempting to pick up the pieces when a good friend, the great Evangelist preacher, D.L. Moody, encouraged him to take a much needed vacation. Moody was doing a preaching stint in England and invited the Spafford family to join him there.

Horacio had some business to attend to so he decided to send his wife and daughters ahead, planning to meet up with them shortly. In route, the Spafford's ship collided with an iron sailing vessel, and all four daughters drowned. Anna was one of only a handful of survivors.

Horacio immediately departed for England to join his devastated wife. When the ship's captain told him that they were passing over the scene of the accident, he retired to his cabin. Overcome with sorrow, he wrote, "When sorrows like sea billows roll, whatever my lot, thou has taught me to say 'It is well with my soul'."

These words were eventually set to music and became the great hymn of the same name -- "It is Well with My Soul".

However, the story did not stop there. A few years later, Horacio and Anna had two more children -- a son and a daughter -- but this son also contracted Scarlett Fever and died at just four years old.

Horacio's life was marked by persistent tragedy and death. In the course of his life, he lost business and real estate and saw the death of six of his eight children. However, he did not surrender himself to anger, sorrow and despair. Though he wrestled with these things to be sure, instead he defiantly declared his hope and trust in his sovereign Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Echoing the words of Paul, he learned to be content in any situation, even death and loss. Ultimately, the Spafford's turned their grief into mercy ministry, founding a small community of believers in Jerusalem working to aid the poor and needy in the early days of World War I.

Horacio's great song challenges us to fight for joy in the midst of tragedy and death -- to defiantly declare that in Jesus, whatever my lot, thou has taught me to say, "It is well. It is well with my soul."