This is one of my top two favorite hymns. It’s good sometimes to sit back and realize that God really is leading in my life.
He leadeth me! O blessed thought! O words with heavenly comfort fraught!
— It really is a relief that God leads me. Life is unpredictable and uncertain enough as it is. It means a lot to know that God has a plan for my life, and that He wants good things for me (Jer 29:11). This guidance meant so much to Moses, that he wasn’t willing to go anywhere until he knew that he had it (Exo 33:14,15).
Whate’er I do, where’er I be, Still ‘tis God’s hand that leadeth me.
— God is with me in whatever walk of life I am in. He is with me at home, at work, in social settings, and when I run errands. He is my good shepherd (Psa 23:2).
He leadeth me, He leadeth me, By His own hand He leadeth me;
— The concept is so profound that the maker of the universe wants to personally lead us that the writer, J. H. Gilmore, says it over and over, almost in disbelief. He leads me. By His own hand He leads me (Isa 41:13).
His faithful follower I would be, For by His hand He leadeth me.
— His amazing involvement shows a character that I desire worth following. I have been with too many leaders who have left me to wander alone. God’s assistance is wonderful.
Sometimes ‘mid scenes of deepest gloom, Sometimes where Eden’s bowers bloom,
— From the lowest low where we can’t perceive a way out, to the highest high of human experience (Gilmore suggests Eden), God is always with us.
By waters still, o’er troubled sea- Still ‘tis His hand that leadeth me!
— Sometimes God leads us to calm restorative places (Psa 23:2), and sometimes He takes us to terrifying circumstances to realize our own impotence and dependence (Luke 8:24). Yet, as always, God is leading us. The journey is as valuable to Him as a destination.
Lord, I would clasp my hand in Thine, Nor ever murmur nor repine;
— The “I would” denotes an “I desire”. This course of action takes in the good and bad, but never questions God’s leading, because He has our best at heart. This peace blocks out whining and discontent.
Content whatever lot I see, Since ‘tis my God that leadeth me.
— This restfulness in God is so amazing (Php 4:11). I wish I could have such total trust in God for myself. This can be our actual experience (Php 4:6,7).
And when my task on earth is done, When, by Thy grace, the victory’s won,
— Oh, for a life of faithfulness that ends close to God. To be called a good and faithful is the greatest joy that I can think of (Matt 25:21). To be content to die or to continue to serve is an ultimate indicator of trust in God (Job 13:15).
E’en death’s cold wave I will not flee, Since God through Jordan leadeth me.
— Death does not paralyze a Christian with fear (Heb 2:14,15). We serve a God that has conquered death, and has told us that He has mansions waiting for us. We will be re-created with new, everlasting bodies. We will someday be in a place where we can see God face to face, and know Him even as He knows us (1 Cor 13:12).
Trust in God. He is real. He will work in your life. He will guide you as a good shepherd to life more abundant. Many have experienced this.