Psalm 121 ‘I lift up my eyes to the mountains – where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.’ (vv1 –2)
This is one of the most misquoted psalms in the Bible. Many seem to imagine that the hills are somehow a reminder of God, and so looking at the hills is a reminder of who He is.
The reality is that for the traveller looking to the hills, is a fearful thing. We might say: ‘I look at the busy, dangerous road.’
Hills were where bandits hid, ready to pounce on the traveller. Psalm 121 is one of the ‘songs of ascent’ traditionally sung as the people of God made their way from the north in Galilee to the south and up to Jerusalem for the Passover.
They would navigate the Jordan valley and might be nervous of the journey. But at such times we look to God, and the psalm talks of God as our helper, like shade in the sun, keeping us from evil and His eyes on us.
Some have interpreted this as if God acts like a lucky charm, keeping us perpetually from harm, when we know that many in the Bible and down through history have faced extremely tough times.
It’s much better to see the psalm as an assurance of God’s presence through the trials of life. We may think He seems asleep and wonder why He hasn’t intervened, but for one person He intervenes, for another He lets things play out, for another He is looking for them to take action.
He’s like a wise parent training a child and learning when to let them grow on their own and when to say something.
We can be sure of a personal concer for our day and, as we involve Him and submit to His purposes, we will know the assurance and peace that these travellers knew as they set out for the journey south.
A Prayer To Make:
Thank You, God, that Your eye is on me and I can trust You to help me navigate life, whatever it throws my way. Amen.
An Action To Take:
Commit each day to the Lord and ask Him to help you manage whatever comes your way.
Scripture To Consider:
Deut. 29:2–29; Ps. 46:1–11; Luke 10:1–20; Jas 1:2–12