“If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast.”
Psalm 139:8-10 (NIV)
Our verses today are from Psalm 139, and it tells of a child of God pondering the fact that no matter where he goes, God is with him. This is a truth that every Christian needs, especially in times when life gets to be too much.
When we find life is going well we can easily forget just how much we really need the Lord. Such easy times in life can deceive us because we seem to manage on our own strength. The choices we make in the good times work well for us. Problems seem to be small and easy to cope with. However, when disaster strikes, we stumble and wonder where God went.
The Psalmist is a man of God and rejoices in the knowledge that no matter where he goes his God is with him. As he thinks about God being everywhere he joyfully says (Psalm 139:6 NIV):
“Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
too lofty for me to attain.”
Whether I am lost in the desert, sick in a hospital bed, rejected and deserted by family and friends, God is with me! Jesus is the Friend Who stays closer than a brother (Proverbs 18:24).
Many a child of God who has been persecuted for his faith derives strength from pondering this magnificent truth. In Acts 16:25 we read of two missionaries, Paul and Silas, who had been thrown into prison for their faith. What their future would be, they did not know. Possible torture, more flogging, even death—lay ahead of them.
There was no way Paul and Silas could email their pastor, or contact the visitation committee of a local church to come and pray with them. The prison did not have a chaplain on staff to visit new inmates. They could not turn on a TV and hear Charles Stanley or some other Bible teacher speak comforting words to them.
Yet, for all of the uncertainties, the darkness of the inner prison, the chaffing of the wooden stocks on their legs, the pain of the flogging they had received, or any other discomfort, the two men prayed and sang songs of worship to the Lord.
They were confident that God was still with them in spite of their uncertain future. It did not matter to them that they were in the prison and away from their work of preaching and teaching Jesus, they knew that God was everywhere and so they did not fear what would happen to them.
Can you read Psalm 139 and find the needed comfort and strength to face your uncertain future? Pray as you read this Psalm and ask the Lord to assure you that He is right there with you in your “prison” of adversity. Call on Him to provide the peace that passes all understanding. He waits to hear from you. He is closer to you than a brother. Tell Him to make this real in your life today.