I sang this old hymn regularly before Jud died and now I have been hearing it again and again in various contexts. The truths of these words by John Rippon, written in 1787, seem to keep emerging as a call to my soul.
How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord, is laid for your faith in his excellent word!
What more can he say than to you he hath said, to you that for refuge to Jesus have fled?
Oh Jesus, shelter me! Let my faith spring from the truth of Your Word.
Fear not, I am with thee; O be not dismayed! For I am thy God, and will still give thee aid;
I’ll strengthen thee, help thee, and cause thee to stand, upheld by my righteous, omnipotent hand.
Father, lest I crumble in my sorrow, sustain me with Your grace and love.
When through the deep waters I call thee to go, the rivers of woe shall not thee overflow;
for I will be with thee, thy troubles to bless, and sanctify to thee thy deepest distress.
On this path laid before me, encircle me in Your care, and make me whole.
When through fiery trials thy pathway shall lie, my grace, all sufficient, shall be thy supply;
the flame shall not hurt thee; I only design thy dross to consume, and thy gold to refine.
Mold me however You see fit, but protect me from evil.
The soul that on Jesus hath leaned for repose, I will not, I will not desert to its foes;
that soul, though all hell shall endeavor to shake, I’ll never, no, never, no, never forsake.
It feels as though hell has rattled me to the core, dear Lord, calm and soothe my shaken soul.