20140425_061218My Bible reading for today, April 25th, included 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.

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.

 There’s something powerful about “lifting up of our eyes to the mountains.”

The choosing to look up when help is needed.

The decision NOT to stay focused on earthly things even when earthly things could easily demand all of our attention.

I remember doing Beth Moore‘s study of the Psalms in Sunday school several years ago.  She talked about the fact that in Old Testament times when you lifted your eyes to the mountains you could literally see a line of small fires all across the mountaintops where people who did not know the One true and living God were offering sacrifices to all sorts of false gods in hopes of pleasing someone who could help them.

So, when the Israelites lifted their eyes, two things happen.

First, they were reminded that their help comes from God.

Second, they were reminded that many people still did not know God as their Lord.

When Nick was sick, my mom was driving to our house one day when she looked up to the sky and saw a cloud in the shape of thumbs-up.  She was able to reach into her purse while driving and find her camera and snap a photo of this cloud just as it was sinking below the line of the hills beside the road.

This photograph became a visual for our family.

A reminder that God was with us every step of the way in Nick’s illness.

We had been photographing friends and family with their thumbs up with Nick throughout his surgery and recovery, and this cloud seemed to be God’s way of visually joining us on Nick’s journey.

People began sending thumbs up photographs to us from all over the world.

To this day, the thumbs-up symbol reminds me of God’s love and the cloud my mom saw as she looked up on a very difficult day in our family’s life.

Over time, we were given three different thumbs-up statues by different friends from different places.

Every time one appeared at our door, we were reminded that we are not alone.

If you ever visit our home, you will see these statues sitting on shelves in different rooms.

I look at them often and smile.

I remember what they mean to our family.

I am convinced more and more every day that looking up for help is the only way to survive and thrive in an often-painful world.

I don’t know where I’d be today without passages like Psalm 121.  Passages that remind me that I serve

a God who will not let my feet slip,

a God who does not slumber who sleep,

a God who watches over me,

a God who is the shade at my right hand so that the sun will not harm me by day or the moon by night,

a God who sees my coming and my going,

and a God who is with me now and forevermore.

Today, lift your eyes to Him who loves you most and watch what happens.

I don’t think you’ll ever  look down again.