When trouble comes to us, and we're not sure where to turn to or what the next step is, where does our help come from?
I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come?
My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber.
Behold, he who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.
The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade on your right hand.
The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night.
The Lord will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life.
The Lord will keep your going out and your coming in from this time forth and forevermore.
It's easy to flip out a verse like "My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth" when times are good, when our life is easy, when tragedy is far off, but what about when we are in desperate need of help?
I see desperate people all the time, and I want to share a few stories with you on how people cope in their times of trouble.
1. I had a friend who went to church with me. I use the word friend loosely because I barely knew him. The guy was odd, wouldn't quit talking, and was obsessed with television and movies. We went to a men's bible study together, and he would often ask me about what the Bible says about this or that subject that affected his life. We would have a short conversation about whatever subject he asked about and he would relate it to some anti-biblical movie or tv show, and I would challenge him to get into his Bible to see what God tells us. After some time, his wife left him and took his two little children with her and he was devastated. Where does our help come from? His answer was that there was no help coming for him and he committed suicide. At his funeral, his mother told me that he talked about me all the time and referred to me as his best friend. At that moment I didn't feel much like a friend because I failed to show him where our help really comes from.
2. I have a friend that I used to work with who was struggling with homosexuality. His female pastor told him that he was ok with God and that it's not a sin, but in his heart he knew something wasn't right. Where does our help come from? For my friend, his help came from 1st Corinthians 6 where we are taught that the unrighteous shall not inherit the earth, but that there were some in the church who had previously been unrighteous but are now washed and then there is a directive to flee sexual immorality. I was glad that day that God's word not only convicts and condemns, but that it also leads to repentance and deliverance.
3. There was a young man in our church who was born to a young lady who's life was a mess. The boy was given to the care of his grandparents and we all felt sorry for him. Everyone felt sorry for him, made excuses for his bad behavior, and gave him a pass on most things that are normal expectations for kids. Where does our help come from? For this family, they chose to go to the psychotherapist and that young man got worldly counsel, and pills to numb his brain. Today, his family lives in fear of him, and the only answers they have after all the counseling, and therapy, and pills is that when he becomes unmanageable that they should "call the police".
4. There is a man in our church who is maybe 5 years older than me at the most. This guy was diagnosed with cancer. He had two kids in high school, one toddler and had a little baby on the way. Where does our help come from? This man told us that if God delivers him that he will praise the Lord, and if God does not deliver him that he will praise the Lord until he dies and know that somehow God will take care of his family. After the surgery and chemotherapy, it looks promising that he may very well make a full recovery, and when I see him hold that little baby that has since been born, it is a testament to Gods care for his own.
I can't say for sure that God's help will always come in the form that we want, but I can always say for sure that we are worth more than the grass of the field and the birds of the air and that God wants what is best for his redeemed. The question is, "Do we trust God enough to follow him, or do we not trust God and try to take the control of our own life back and try to help ourselves?".