How can we feel isolated while we are in a crowd? Why are we lonely after a Thanksgiving meal, or potluck supper, or family get-to-gather? What makes special events tax not only our energy but also our spiritual health?
King David understood these emotions. He wrote, “Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.” (Psalm 43:5) For many reasons or no reason at all, even when we are physically and spiritually healthy, our souls can be downcast. Well, be encouraged by Psalm 139:7–12
Where shall I go?
7 Where shall I go from your Spirit?
Or where shall I flee from your presence?
8 If I ascend to heaven, you are there!
If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!
9 If I take the wings of the morning.
and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
10 even there your hand shall lead me,
and your right hand shall hold me.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me,
and the light about me be night,”
12 even the darkness is not dark to you;
the night is bright as the day,
for darkness is as light with you.
God’s Hand Guides Us
I love this Psalm because it reminds me that God is everywhere. He’s not like a wireless network that has spotty coverage – some places I can be near God, but other places I’ve got zero bars! I may be stuck with a dead battery or at a mandatory office party or at a relative’s house that is full of darkness, even there I can communicate with God!
Verse ten, “even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me” is so encouraging. Innumerable times I’ve led one of my five kids by placing my hand on his or her back and guiding them through stores, trains, school events, and more. They were too short to see where to go and their environment was unfamiliar. Yet we made it through.
That is the way the Holy Spirit is with us. We may be too small in spiritual stature to see above the crowd and the environment may make no sense to us, but God has our back. In those times we can trust that God was with us, His desire was to see His will done through us. As the Apostle Peter wrote in 1 Peter 5:7, “Cast all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.“
As we enter the most frenetic time of the year, trust Jesus, I mean really trust Him, uninhibited and not restrained by long worn ruts in family relationships. Let God’s light shine. As the Psalmist wrote about God, “even the darkness is not dark to you.” (Psalms 139:12)
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