“I will lift up my eyes to the hills-- from whence comes my help? My help comes from the Lord, Who made heaven and earth. He will not allow your foot to be moved; He who keeps you will not slumber” (Psalm 121:1-3).
For those of us who had served in the military we know the importance of standing guard and being watchful. In fact, during times of war, being alert and vigilant while standing guard is so important that if one falls asleep while on guard duty the punishment can be death. Paul spoke to Timothy about the importance of Christians being watchful, “But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry” (2 Timothy 4:5). As Christians, we are to be watchful for the devil (1 Peter 5:8), watchful for one another (1 Thessalonians 5:14), and watchful as we look forward to the Second Coming of Christ (Matthew 24:42).
However, in Psalm 121 the psalmist speaks not about our being watchful, but rather about God being watchful over us. He speaks about the vigilance with which God watches over us: “Behold, He who keeps Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep” (Psalm 121:4). He is diligent to preserve us from harm: “The Lord shall preserve you from all evil; He shall preserve your soul. The Lord shall preserve your going out and your coming in from this time forth, and even forevermore” (Psalm 121:7-8). God is so careful in His watch over us that not even a ray of light can get past Him and through to us if He does not want it to: “The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade at your right hand. The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night” (Psalm 121:5-6).
As He watches over us, God will not allow anything to come near us or happen to us that He does not want: “He will not allow your foot to be moved; He who keeps you will not slumber” (Psalm 121:3). This doesn’t mean that no trials ever happen to us as Christians. God allows us to go through trials in order that we may grow in our faith and mature as Christians (James 1:2-4; Romans 5:3-4). However, isn’t it comforting to know that God sets up boundaries regarding the trials He will allow to come upon us? God knows how much each of us can withstand. He will not allow a trial to come upon us that is too great for us to bear: “No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it” (1 Corinthians 10:13).
Because the psalmist knew of God’s watchful care over him, he could face the challenges of life with confidence: “I will lift up my eyes to the hills-- from whence comes my help? My help comes from the Lord, Who made heaven and earth” (Psalm 121:1-2). No trial or threat would be too great for him because He knew God was looking out for him and was ready to help at a moment’s notice.
Today, I rejoice that God has such watchful care over me. He doesn’t fall asleep while he is standing guard over me and my soul. He will not allow anything to come upon me that He does not believe I can handle as long as I place my faith in Him. I praise God for He is the One Who watches over me!
“And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father's will. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows” (Matthew 10:28-30).