Where Help Comes From
I lift up my eyes to the hills—from where will my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. – Psalm 121:1-2 (NRSV)
I lift up my eyes to my car, broken down in Middle-of-Nowhere, Nebraska. From where will my help come?
My help comes from God, who arrives as a husband and wife in matching Harley-Davidson t-shirts. God takes me and my dog out of the life-threatening heat and into their home.
My help comes from God, looking like a young tow-truck driver who changed his surname to his wife’s so she wouldn’t be re-traumatized by having his family name remind her of the man who sexually assaulted her.
My help comes from God, who is clearly just showing off when the manager of an auto parts store announces he will do whatever it takes to get us back on the road—because he works for Jesus.
Psalm 121 is not about beautiful hills. It is about taking an honest look at whatever stands between us and well-being—and trusting that God will make a way through. It is an invitation to ask the Holy One for help, and to recognize God when help comes.
Look around: at our dwindling bank balances, our strained relationships, our aging bodies, our dysfunctional families, a nation divided by fear and hatred, a democracy in peril, a world on fire. From where will our help come?
From God, who may show up how and when we least expect it. From God, who is our keeper and our deliverer, our strength and our hope.
Holy One, we need your help. May we trust you until it comes, and recognize you when it’s here.
Vicki Kemper is the Pastor of First Congregational, UCC, of Amherst, Massachusetts.