A Shelter in the Time of Storm

Hear my cry, O God; attend unto my prayer. From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I. For thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy (Psalm 61:1-3).

Are you seeking shelter?

Vernon J. Charlesworth wrote “A Shelter in the Time of Storm” in a minor chord around 1880. Fishermen often sang the original tune when safely coming ashore amid a storm. Later, Ira D. Sanky removed several lines, added a refrain, and wrote another tune he thought people would find easier to sing.

If you’d like to read the original version, visit Hymnary.org.

A Shelter in the Time of Storm

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.
Refrain: Oh, Jesus is a Rock in a weary land, 
A weary land, a weary land; 
Oh, Jesus is a Rock in a weary land, 
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 fears 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.

Author: Vernon J. Charlesworth Public Domain

Tune: Shelter Ira D. Sankey

Angels, from the Realms of Glory

And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots: Isaiah 11:1

I enjoy the Christmas play. The excitement. The last minute costume changes. The music. The hushed wonder. The laughter and the tears. For who can watch a reenactment of the Christ child and not remember the reason why He came?

And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD;
And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears:
But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked.
And righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins. Isaiah 11:2-5

Words- 1816 James Montgomery
Music- 1867 Henry T. Smart

Favorite line
Gather all the nations to Him; ev’ry knee shall then bow down.

Stand by Me

As a singer, it’s never enough just to sing a song. I want to know who wrote it and what moved them to put pen to paper and tell the world their inner thoughts. The more I know about the song, the more the words resonate with me as I realize this person understands my present struggles.

Charles Tindley

Charles Tindley/Wikimedia

As a budding author, my eyes often wandered to the upper right-hand corner of the page in search of the author.

I  noticed the songs Nothing Between, Stand By Me, We’ll Understand It Better By and By, and Leave It There had something in common. They were all written by Charles A. Tindley.

I thought I would share what I found about this brave and humble man.

Robert J. Morgan in his book, Then Sings My Soul, Volume 2 tells the following:


  • Born into slavery.
  • He used bits of newspaper found along the roadside to teach himself the ABC’s
  • Took correspondence courses. “Thus while I was unable to go through the schools, I was able to let the schools go through me.”
  • Called an unlettered ignoramus
  • Became a pastor
  • Established soup kitchens
  • Opened his church to the homeless in cold weather
  • Knew criticism, abuse, hard and many opposition

Did he understand the depth of what he was writing? I believe so.

Do I?

When I sing those familiar songs, do I sing them with the same passion as he felt when putting pen to paper? I wonder.

I admit, it’s easy to open my mouth and let the words fly out without ever thinking about the message. But when I think of all this man went through, something inside me begins to stir.

For the same God that he wrote about is the same God I serve today. And no matter what may come my way He will never fail me.

I believe Charles A. Tindley knew, understood, and wrote about that truth.

Stand By Me~Charles Albert Tindley ~Public Domain

When the storms of life are raging, Stand by me; When the storms of life are raging, Stand by me. When the world is tossing me, Like a ship upon the sea, Thou Who rulest wind and water, Stand by me.

Read more here

Stand by Me is a prayer from a determined heart who understands his relationship with his God. It is about casting all cares on God because He cares for us, and then standing on His promises knowing He will deliver.

If you’re interested in more on this subject I recommend buying the books by Robert J. Morgan. It is definitely worth the read!