Letter To Our Children

by Pastor Joe | August 31, 2022 | Letters To Our Children


August 31, 2022


Hello friends!


It has been a bit since I have last written to you. It was on purpose. I had two of the last three weeks off and thought a little break would be right.


One of those weeks I spent with my daughter Lindsey helping her move into her new apartment. The other I officiated the wedding of my nephew in Savannah, Georgia.


Yesterday was my first day back at the church, and one of the first things I did was write to you.


Your Summer Rest

When people in the church are sick, afraid, or under some great strain in life, it makes me very sad. One of the things I often do is send them some or all the lines to the hymn, Day by Day. The second verse of this song is its heart.

Every day the Lord Himself is near me,
With a special mercy for each hour;
All my cares He fain would bear and cheer me,
He whose name is Counsellor and Pow’r.
The protection of His child and treasure
Is a charge that on Himself He laid;
“As thy days, thy strength shall be in measure,”
This the pledge to me He made.

The hymn was written by Lina Sandell Berg (1882-1903), the daughter of a pastor from Froderyd, Sweden. In her youth, she was frail and decided to spend more time with her father than play with other children. At the age of twenty-six, she traveled with him. Midway through their journey, the ship had an unexpected shake, and her father fell overboard and drowned before Lina’s eyes.


She had started writing hymns before this accident, but in light of it, she penned the words to Day by Day from a broken heart and a simple child-like trust in Christ.


As things unfolded, God gave Lina a friend, Oscar Ahnfelt, who put the hymn to music. And God moved by His Spirit using Lina’s song(s) as one of the catalysts for an overwhelming number of conversions in Scandinavia (modern day Denmark, Norway and Sweden).


It is true that whenever the Gospel begins to make an impact, the kingdom of evil tries to stop it. Sometimes the evil one uses religious people other times, people of power. In this case, it was the latter. King Carl XV said that all gospel preaching and singing was to stop in Scandinavia. Soon He called for Oscar Ahnfelt to appear before him to stand trial. Ahnfelt asked Lina Sandell to write a special hymn for him to sing to the King, and she did.


As he sang, the king listened and began to cry. When Oscar had finished, the king grabbed his hand and said, you may sing and preach as much as you desire in all of my Kingdom. It almost sounds like a fairy tale with a beautiful happy ending.


I hope the summer of 2022 is ending beautifully and happily for you, as in this story. It is good to remind you that you are so well and perfectly loved by God, imperfectly by me, but trying to get better. Your current and future progress at all points of your life matter tremendously to me. My prayers, service, preaching, and praying are aimed toward your good both now and in the future. I am happy, thankful, and excited for what our life will look like together this and other years.


You have a few more days of summer. May God bless them with His beauty.


Pastor Joe