Behind the Song: Sheltered in the Arms of God
Sheltered in the Arms of God is another one of those songs close to my heart that has helped me through so many difficult days and hours.
This beautiful song was written by Dottie Rambo.
According to a St. Augustine newspaper article about the song, Dottie had just gone through a difficult time with a friend who had disappointed her. She decided to walk along the beach to clear her mind.
Dottie is recorded as recalling, “There had been a very bad storm the day before and driftwood was scattered along the beach. I was going through a time that was a low valley for me. It was sort of a ‘storm’ in my own life. As the whitecaps broke across the water, and as I walked among the driftwood and the seaweed with my guitar strapped over my shoulder, I pondered the lyrics of several songs that the Lord seemed to be giving to me at the time.”
“All of a sudden I thought, ‘Lord, this storm is so much like my life, and yet, in the midst of the storms of life, you have been a shelter to me. When I can’t take the storm, I run to you for that shelter and, suddenly, I feel secure.’”
While pondering these thoughts she began to write Sheltered in the Arms of God. While the melody came easily, she struggled with how to start the song.
Dottie recalled, “As I continued to walk, I pled with the Lord, ‘Lord, how am I going to start this song?’ And, as I was talking to God, the closeness of the Lord touched me on the shoulder. I felt his presence, so real. I had a very warm feeling and these words came forth: ‘Thank you, Lord, I feel the touch of your hand, so kind and tender.’ Then I started to weep and I said, ‘Lord, that is how I will open the song.’”
As God ministered to her spirit, the words poured forth and Sheltered in the Arms of God was born.
This is the story which has turned up multiple times in my research.
In 2022, I received an email stating “Sweet little story about Rambo writing “Sheltered in the Arms of God,” but the song was a collaboration between Louisiana Governor Jimmy Davis and Rambo with Davis first presenting the rough song to Rambo for writing help. But most attribute the song solo to Rambo.” I will update as more information becomes available.
How has God sheltered you in His arms?