I lift up my eyes to the hills—from where will 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. He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.
The LORD is your keeper; the LORD is your shade at 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 on and forevermore.
Sometimes walking in faith can be hard. We experience a loss, or we feel isolated, or broken, or we’re sick. It is during times like these that we can’t even grasp our faith. Years ago, while my sister was visiting for the summer, we discovered that Mikey, my three-year-old nephew, had leukemia. Not long after that we discovered that my mother also received a cancer diagnosis. I felt that this was more than I could handle. I became angry at God, so angry that one day I threw all my Bibles out of my house onto my front lawn. I was evicting God from my life. One moment I am thinking about going to seminary and in the next, I’m throwing God out of my life.
After my spectacle, I went out to pick up the Bibles. Reaching down to pick up the first one,I found myself falling on my hands and knees, asking God for forgiveness. Now, I don’t know if Bette went out with me or if she found me there, but eventually I felt Bette’s hands on my back and I heard her whisper, “It’ll be all right. No matter what happens God, is with us. It’ll be all right. It’ll be all right.” Soon, I was not only asking God for forgiveness but also for strength, for healing, and for help. Slowly, with Bette’s help, I picked myself up along with all our Bibles and brought them back into our house.
As time progressed, things got better. I found myself growing in my understanding of my faith, even during the struggles that both my mom and Mikey were experiencing. We lived a yearly roller coaster ride of getting better and then going out of remission. Year after year we lived that ride of life. Every year my family gathered together for the summer. The year that Mikey was seven, my brother Mike (Mikey’s namesake), Bette, and I were watching all the cousins play in my parent’s backyard. Mike looked at us and said, “How can you look at a seven-year-old with cancer and still have faith?” Bette, still looking out at the kids playing, replied, “How can you look at a seven-year-old with cancer and not have faith?” It was that faith that empowered us to walk with Mikey through his short life.
“I lift up my eyes to the hills—from where will my help come? My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth.” Amen.