” 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. He will not let your foot slip—he who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord watches over you—the Lord is your shade at your right hand; the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord will keep you from all harm—he will watch over your life; the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.”
As I’ve read this psalm I’ve been comforted by it. We are told five times that God watches over us. The God of all creation is interested in the minutiae of our everyday lives. While he is sustaining the universe and holding the planets in their rightful place, he’s not too weary to think of me in my need. As he watches me, he never slumbers or sleeps. As he watches, he protects me from any harm that can be inflicted during the heat of the day, and when the sun has gone down, he protects me from all danger that can arise in the night. He surrounds us, and hems us in so that it’s impossible for evil to triumph over us.
So often I can feel forgotten or abandoned. I need to remember today that he is a God who watches over us. God constantly looks out for us. He is a loving father whose eyes are always on his precious children, relentlessly and tenaciously protecting us from all harm which will continue into eternity.
Through the difficulties of the last year, I can say with great conviction that he has protected me from harm. He has not let my foot slip but has hemmed me in with his love. I have come to appreciate the lessons he has taught me through pain and suffering. God never promises to give us an easy life, but he can use our difficulties and disappointments to grow us and draw us to himself.
” Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”
More knots have unloosened and are unravelling . The shame and grief I have been clinging onto I am now slowly letting go of. My mindset has changed over the last week, and my warped paranoia is diminishing as we’ve been affected by the kindness of others. Kind words have been spoken and that kindness has soothed and comforted and begun to bind up my broken heart.
As we’ve met with people from our past, the first awkward and terrifying meeting is now over and our anxiety and fears have been allayed. Kindness has impacted us, and is the glue which is putting the broken pieces of my heart back together again.
The gospel is so wonderful. It shows us that there is no room for an unforgiving spirit, no room for grudges, no room for distance, no room for walking on the other side of the road. There is such beauty in the gospel when it is really worked through. I thank God for the kind words that touched us last weekend.
The gospel is radical. It’s relentless in how we respond to others and refuses all excuses. But although the response that is demanded from us is so costly, there is such comfort in it. Christ always responds in that way to us. His kindness never runs out. His kindness is limitless and sacrificial:, By his stripes we are healed. ( Isaiah 53 : 5)
As we faced our fears, kindness impacted us and comforted my struggling soul.
One thing I’ve learned through this experience is that a text or an email with just a few lines breaks the silence. When the silence breaks then so does the isolation. We have already experienced that particular kindness from many lovely friends, but after this weekend we know it more fully and we are overwhelmed with thankfulness.
For any Christian reading this. Be kind. Look out for the hurting. The repentant offender, the isolated. Don’t just pray for them, verbalise it too. Those words will impact and give great comfort and help. The gospel is beautiful when it is fully worked through.