“I look up to the mountains - does my help come from there?” Ps 121:1
I’m sure that we’ve all, at some point, been part of an attempt to create a human pyramid! With strong men on the bottom row and a small person on the top, we all remember the pain of knees digging into our backs, followed by the wobbling and shaking as the structure begins to take the pressure of all the bodies. Whether with just three people or twenty, when any of the bottom row (foundations) are removed, everything collapses.
We all have a choice as to what we build our lives upon and every builder needs to know which materials are strong, reliable and unshakeable and which materials are flimsy and quick to collapse under pressure. God is good to us and sets us up to build lives which won’t crumble under the pressures and stresses of the world.
Psalm 121 begins with asking us where we seek our help from. Where do we look to in times of trouble? Many places offer us solutions in life but unfortunately, many of them are worldly and can be distracting. God knows us. He’s created us as mind, body and spirit beings. Thankfully, He has put things in place for us to look to and help us connect with Him on a daily basis.
- The Word - He has blessed us with an abundance of truth in His word! God’s word is alive and active today. It has life-giving power and has been put in place for us, His people, to receive from Him. He designed it to shape us and change us. I have learnt increasingly over the years, how the Word will bring life where other things won’t. Yes, He can speak to us wherever and whenever He likes but I’ve come to learn that He chooses to speak to us through His Word. Our lives must be built on the Word of God. Life without the Word will fall apart. How powerful would our whole church family’s faith journey look if every single one of us loved God’s word and actively advocated the power of the Word of God?
- The Saints - He has created us to be people together. I have been lucky enough to be rooted in a church family for most of my life and have learned how God loves to speak to us and minister to us through other people. God gives wisdom through God-loving people. He fills our lives with men and women who challenge and sharpen us as well as care and help us. We can know God personally but we can’t know Him well in isolation because He reveals himself through the church body. Our Christian walk must be built with others; it’s not good for us to do it alone.
- The Holy Spirit, ‘our helper’ - God has sent us the Holy Spirit as a gift to us so that we can have a permanent ‘Advocate’ after Jesus left the earth. In John 16:7, the Holy Spirit is also called our ‘Comforter, Encourager and Counsellor’. As each of us seek God’s presence daily, the Holy Spirit will guide us and provide discernment and strength to our circumstances. In Romans 8:6, Paul also assures us that, 'The mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace'. What truth and joy we can cling onto from this!
• Of the three God-given areas above, which are you using to look to and relate to Jesus on a daily basis? Choose one which you would like to dig deeper into and commit to a small practical goal for today (e.g. if the Holy Spirit, commit to spending time asking for His presence today to help with a certain situation or person).
• Ask God to speak to you about how you can love a particular friend or family in your congregation and how you can be an encouragement to them today as we journey together!