“When peace, like a river, attendeth my way, when sorrows like sea billows roll; whatever my lot, thou hast taught me to say, It is well, it is well with my soul.”
The river is a symbol of peace.
As I ponder the words of the old hymn written above, a part of me doesn’t assimilate peace with a river. For one thing, a river is unpredictable. A river can be big, small, tranquil, or raging. A river is powerful and always moving. However, a river brings life to a dry land.
Whenever the pioneers or natives explored America they would move to an area close to a river. The mighty Mississippi is one example of settlements that turned into big cities. Or, perhaps the beautiful Columbia river that cuts across the Northwest, helped to create sustenance for those who followed the paths of Lewis and Clark. And, my favorite, the Colorado River, which formed the beautiful Grand Canyon and feeds the Southwest with its life giving water to a dry desert, is a reminder of sure power and beauty.
The color blue represents peace to me.
Blue is a calming color, just as the blue sky or the blue waters of the oceans and rivers show a sense of calm. It is the notion of acquainting blue with peace that makes me understand why the above hymn was written. When I sit by a pool, or gaze at the ocean, or wade in the river, I am at peace. A storm could come and upset the current, but the water itself is the calming factor.
The very essence of what makes a river a river is the reason for its peacefulness. It is the outside influences that change the essence on a temporary level. But once those outside influences have ceased or disappeared, the water goes back to its normal flow.
In my pursuit of peace I am looking to nature to help me understand the “whys” of life. I know that my Creator made the things in nature so beautiful that I cannot doubt that He wants me to be at peace. When I gaze at His creation I have a renewed hope for peace. My heartbeats slow down, and I breathe easier.
A river is blue. Blue represents peace. Therefore, a river does represent peace.
I understand it now.