Ever-present help…

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.  Psalm 46:1

Bombings, terrorism, violent crime, shooting rampages, natural disasters, civil war, innocent victims…

The mantra of “We’re gonna get back up!” can begin to sound hollow and empty. 

The answer isn’t resignation, but surely there must be a greater source of strength than “the indomitable American spirit?”  

It can seem like we’re walking through the valley of the shadow of death and trying to cheer ourselves (and others) back to the mountaintop.  The resilience and potential resolve of the human spirit is amazing.  We all need encouragement.  

But sometimes you don’t need a cheerleader but “one called alongside to help.”  
That is one of the meanings of the Holy Spirit’s name.  He actually gives help, peace, strength, hope…

It is in the place of desperation where we can “fear no evil” not because we are super-positive, but because “God is with us.”

An ever-present help in trouble.

The Psalms can become our songs.  We can learn to sing in every situation.  Sometimes lamenting.  Sometimes celebrating.  Just reading them, singing them, it puts words and expression to our struggle.  It opens the door for God’s presence to comfort and strengthen.

One guy shared about being shaken up by the economy and the stress of it all. He wondered about how to provide for his family.  He plunged deeper into despair and self-destructive behavior.  He was asking “WHY GOD?  Why did you let me get into this mess?”

Reaching the end of his rope something changed.  Perspective changes when you can’t pull yourself up and don’t have the strength to hold on.

He found the ever-present help in trouble.

Learning to quit searching for more resolve, more internal strength, more happy thoughts.  How exhausting when everything around us is being shaken.

“Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe…”  Hebrews 12:28

An ever-present help in trouble.

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