Amazing Grace: 366 Hymn Stories

July 13

Vernon J. Charlesworth, 1838–? with alteration
You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance. (Psalm 32:7)
Storms often hit the northern coast of England bringing distress to the many small fishing vessels that ply the coastal waters. It is reported that “A Shelter in the Time of Storm” has long been a favorite song of many of the fishermen in this area, and they are often heard singing it as they approach their harbors during a storm.
The vivid wording of this hymn assures us that we too are safer during life’s storms with Christ in control than in the calm times without Him. We as Christians must rest assured that “no fears alarm, no foes affright” in the shelter of His safe retreat. Just as a young bird would never fly if not pushed out of its nest, we would never develop spiritual strength if we did not learn to handle—with absolute confidence in God—the storms He allows to come our way.
The text for this hymn was written by Vernon J. Charlesworth, an English pastor who also served as headmaster of Charles Spurgeon’s Stockwell Orphanage. Ira Sankey, American gospel musician and publisher, discovered the song in a small London paper and gave it a singable new melody, adding a refrain that could be easily sung.
The Lord’s our Rock, in Him we hide—a shelter in the time of storm, secure whatever ill betide—a shelter in the time of storm.
A shade by day, defense by night—a shelter in the time of storm; no fears alarm, no foes affright—a shelter in the time of storm.
The raging storms may round us beat—a shelter in the time of storm; we’ll never leave our safe retreat—a shelter in the time of storm.
O Rock divine, O Refuge dear—a shelter in the time of storm; be Thou our helper ever near—a shelter in the time of storm.
Chorus: O Jesus is a Rock in a weary land, a weary land, a weary land; O Jesus is a Rock in a weary land—a shelter in the time of storm.

    For Today: Psalm 94:22; Proverbs 14:26; Isaiah 12:2; 26:4; Nahum 1:7; Hebrews 10:22

Thank God for the storms in life that have helped you develop spiritual strength. Seek to encourage someone who may be floundering in a difficult situation. Carry this musical truth with you realizing—

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