Where Does My Help Come From?

I lift my eyes to the hills, from where does my help come? My help comes from the Lord who made heaven and earth - Psalm 121:1-2

This verse screams conviction at me. In theory, I believe it with every fiber of my being. I know that  I can do nothing without God's sovereign help. But in practice, I act like I'm a tower of competency all on my own. I believe that my help comes from the Lord, but I act the exact opposite.

This is a regular battle in my life. I go through seasons where I am overwhelmed by my circumstances, cry out to God for help, recieve said help, and then praise God for the moment of relief. But when the relief comes something else starts to happen in my soul. I feel pretty sure of myself. I made it through the difficulty on top (or at least without dying). God gets pushed to the side and Courtney moves front and center. I may pay lip service to God's almighty help in my situation, but in my heart I'm screaming "Me, me, me! I can do this!"

Recycle and repeat.

God has been taking me on a journey (a long, long one) of learning to trust him not only in the moments of weakness, but when the weakness dissipates, too. When all is going well it's easy for me to think that the goodness I am experiencing is owing only to my skills, and forget God all together. It's when the heat of life is blown on me that I am forced to run to him for cool relief.

And that's a good thing.

I felt that very heat last night. It's not unlike countless nights before it. Insert any situation that has threatened to swallow me in overwhelming despair or just straight-up exhaustion, and I know I have been there before and seen the same comforting results. God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble. He's been kneading this truth into my life these last many years, and it's been good for my soul, but often painful to endure. He will have no proud and self-sufficient children. And I am no different.

So when I awoke this morning, Daniel had placed this verse on the counter for me to see. I am so often tempted to look for help in what I can see with my own eyes. But my eyes like to play tricks on me, especially when I am physically tired and emotionally weary. How do I know that my help comes from the Lord? The second part of this verse provides a helpful clue: "the Lord, who made heaven and earth."

The same God who spoke something out of nothing, said one word and creation burst into existence, and formed his people out of the dusty ground he made, is the God who is our help. Every earthly help that promises to sustain us or satisfy us bows in submission to the creator of the entire universe. There is no security apart from our great God. There is no help without him. He sustains what he created. He helps what is rightfully his, namely us, his image bearing children.

When I went to bed last night I wished for rest and got another exhausting day instead. Sure, I was a little less tired than I was when my head first hit the pillow, but the sleep is never enough. The day's duties were waiting for me and I felt anything but competent to tackle them. But God is not surprised by my weariness. In fact, he welcomes it. It is in my sleep that the God who never sleeps is working actively. It is in my weakness that his strength is so beautifully displayed. It is in my inability to get everything done that he is shown to be supreme over all things, even a to-do list and busy toddlers.

Where can we look in our moments of despair or weariness? The God who is our help and is sustaining us by his very word.