Thursday, March 26, 2015


I thought my memory served me well, but I was only partially correct. We did sing the chorus “Peace like a river” at times during my teen years at our “Singspirations,” but now I remember that when we were ready to pack up and go home, it was more often “Thou Wilt Keep Him in Perfect Peace.” A couple of the other survivors from that long ago experience might correct me.

It is based on Isaiah 26:3, "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee."

The Amplified Paraphrase version richly enhances the meaning and is completed by verse 4:

“You will guard him and keep him in perfect and constant peace whose mind [both its inclination and its character] is stayed on You, because he commits himself to You, leans on You and hopes confidently in You. So trust in the Lord—commit yourself to Him, lean on Him, hope confidently in Him—forever; for the Lord God is an everlasting rock—the Rock of ages.”

To be “stayed” on the Lord means to abide in Him, settle on Him, be securely anchored in Him, steadfastly remain, continue resolutely grounded in Him without being moved. It is an endurance and persistence and everlasting word packed with meaning.

The Lord is "stayed" on us; the Scripture says "we are graven on His palm" and "we are the apple of His eye." Because God never changes, “Even to your old age, I shall be the same, and even to your graying years I shall bear you!” (Isaiah 46:4) what I experienced of His perfect peace in my teens, is meant to sustain me in my advanced calendar years. 

God is the One who gives me perfect peace and rest; but it is conditional. I am the one who has to do the "staying" of my mind on Him in order to qualify for His peace that passes understanding.
 Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Thee;
When the shadows come and darkness falls, He giveth inward peace:
O He is the only perfect resting place - He giveth perfect peace!
Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stay'd on Thee.

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