29 Jul Look Beyond The Hills
My husband and I have four feral cats. They are a family: dad, mother, daughter and son. My husband gave all of them names. There is Tommy, Molly, TJ (short for Tommy Junior) and Sally. They usually just lay around the yard, chasing the birds or looking for snacks at the neighbors. They like running the neighbor’s dog crazy. His name is Max and he will bark, and bark and they just lay there. When our cats want to see what is going on next door, they find a high platform on which to perch. Those high places also provide a panoramic view of their surroundings, a refuge and a place of protection.
“I lift up my eyes to the mountains: Where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip: He who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord watches over you: The Lord is your shade at your right hand.” Psalm 121:1-5
Like our cats, David sought a high place for protection. When David was pursued, he would seek a hill for protection on which to stand. 1 Samuel 23:14 states, “David stayed in the wilderness strongholds and in the hills of the Desert of Ziph, day after day Saul searched for him, but God did not give David into his hands.” 1 Samuel 26:13 says, “Then David crossed over to the other side and stood on top of the hill some distance away; there was a wide space between them.”
Was it on these hills that he called out to God? I think it was. Can we look at these hills as the dark places in our life when we cannot depend on family or friends? Are you facing a divorce, a loss of a family member or close friend, incarceration of a child, loss of a job, or a diagnosis of a serious illness?
David’s vantage point was a high place. It did not matter if it was a hill or a mountain. God does not want us to stay in our dark places. Look at what God says in 1 Kings 20:28, “The man of God came up and told the king of Israel, This is what the Lord says: ‘Because the Arameans think the Lord is a God of hills and not a god of the valleys, I will deliver this vast army into your hands, and you will know that I am the Lord.’”
Are we confident in our trust and faith in God knowing he will bring us through? David had his men, but his reliance was not on them but on God. David could not have been victorious in the many battles he fought without the help of God. God was his protection and refuge. David knew his help came from the Lord. Are we placing complete trust in God? How strong is our faith? I like the quote by Bro. Greene, “Faith begins where our power ends”. Perhaps you rely on your job, or your investments or family members. Looking back on my life, I realize that in those dark places, it was only God that brought me through.
I can imagine David doing a little dance and gesticulating when he thought about God’s power. David knew the source of his strength and power. Sometimes when I am faced with a conflict or issue, I will say to myself, “They do not know whom I belong to”. It is at this time, I recall Psalm 27:1, “The Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid.”
Our cats are still seeking those high places on which to perch that Max cannot reach. Come out of your dark place with prayer, worship and praise in a high place and find comfort in God’s protection. Begin to place your complete trust in God. God does not sleep. He will not fail you. Allow God to shower you with his grace and mercy.
When Sunday comes back around visit our congregation to hear more of God’s word and reach the heights you were called to sustain.