There Is a Balm in Gilead ~ Hymn 792

By: Alan Harvey

Posted: April 14, 2020

Category: Daily Devotional

Devotional Thoughts Based on the Glory to God Hymnal

Lamentations 5:21

Restore us to yourself, O Lord, that we may be restored; renew our days as of old.

As I write this devotional, I am at the church and I am alone. I am keeping my social distances and going only to places of necessity … Publix, Walmart, and CVS to get food, prescriptions, and other supplies while the Coronavirus is raging. It is strange to see shelves void of items that are usually well stocked. It seems odd that items commonly available are now limited to 1 -2 per person. It is difficult re-training myself. No handshakes. No hugs. Thorough hand washing.

While passing through the great room the other day, I saw a man on TV, who, in the days of the Old West, would have been labeled a ‘snake oil salesman.’ He was offering some product that was to be effective in treating/curing this virus. The reputable people I have heard and seen on TV have said that there is no such medication available presently. I was incensed that someone like him could “hawk” such a remedy when so many people are gravely ill and hurting.

As I turned to this hymn, I am reminded that while the medical research community is laboring to find medications to treat the virus and a vaccine to prevent it, more time is needed for discovery and testing. The hymn says: There Is a Balm in Gilead to make the wounded whole” and we would affirm that need. While a medication and a vaccine may be found or created, ultimately it will be the Holy Spirit who will revive our souls again. Throughout the years God has been the Great Physician, who heals us of our diseases and who makes us whole, although God has chosen men and women doctors to be instruments of God’s healing. God is, and always will, be the Great Physician!


O Great Physician, “restore us to Yourself, O Lord, that we may be restored; renew our days as of old.” In Christ’s name, we pray. Amen.