Every human relationship is bound to let us down, because every human is finite. At some point, our spouse, our children, our best friend will leave us. It’s inevitable. The only unending security is in God, because God is eternal. That lasting comfort is expressed in the hymn, Leaning on the Everlasting Arms. It was written in by Professor Anthony Showalter.
In 1887, Professor Showalter spent some time in Alabama teaching music. One day, after class, he returned to his boarding house to find letters from two of his former music students. Both men were writing with the sad news that their wives had recently died.
Showalter wanted to console them with a Bible verse, and this is the one he chose:
“The eternal God is your refuge and underneath are the everlasting arms; He will thrust out the enemy before you, and will say, ‘destroy.'” Deuteronomy 33:27
He decided that rather than sending simply the verse, he would compose a song based upon it. He wrote the chorus with which we are all familiar:
Leaning, leaning, safe and secure from all alarms,
Leaning, leaning, leaning on the everlasting arms.
He later sent the chorus to Reverend Elisha Hoffman in Pennsylvania who added the verses for this beautiful hymn.
For more hymns see these posts: