I lift up my eyes to the hills —
from where will my help come?
2My help comes from the LORD,
who made heaven and earth.
3He will not let your foot be moved;
he who keeps you will not slumber.
4He who keeps Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.
5The LORD is your keeper;
the LORD is your shade at your right hand.
6The sun shall not strike you by day,
nor the moon by night.
7The LORD will keep you from all evil;
he will keep your life.
8The LORD will keep
your going out and your coming in
from this time on and forevermore.
I have been nourished by this prayer for years. As I prayed it today with a handful of other people it struck me in a new way given the fact that I continue to live with an unpredictable and incurable neurological disease. I have been reading other people's blogs who suffer from the same type of disease, although they have lost more than I have.
What does it mean to have the protection of God in the midst of suffering? At some place in my soul there must be a reconciliation of the goodness of God and the pain that I experience along with the pain others live with. Without this reconciliation I will suffer without hope; for if God is not good then who is? Pain without the mystery of Christ is meaningless and futile. Pain with Christ can be transformed or in my case being transformed daily. There is much work left to do in my soul, however I know that the work is being done. God is at work in the deep recesses of my being transforming, healing, forgiving and reconciling all things through his Son.
This is the reason for hope and joy in my life. My pain is not my own, it is my Lord's and he is working in, through and despite me. He never sleeps, never leaves and therefore I can grow in praying alongside the Psalmist that God will keep me from all evil.