Psalm 121

Who’s in Control?
Irmgard Swanson

Read Psalm 121

I lift up my eyes to the hills—
from where will my help come? Psalm 121:1

“Head for the hills!” — a phrase which expresses the feeling of fleeing danger or troubles; a desire to seek safety or refuge. 

This is how I have been feeling many times, especially the last couple of years. I want to get away from the problems of the world; I want to be above it all, on a higher plane, looking down at the chaos instead of being in it. The continuing presence of the COVID-19 virus along with its mutations, the worry for the health and safety of family and friends, the scary indicators of climate change, the political divisions here and around the world, the outbreak of wars, and the damage we are doing to our environment are just some of the problems from which I want to flee. I can’t control those situations or make them go away. The problems remain.

BUT that really is the problem, isn’t it? The problem is me. It is not I who can control the situations that worry me. The second verse of Psalm 121 says it plainly: “My help comes from the Lord.” Herein lies one of my sins that I know too well — my lack of trust in God who is in charge. 

Time and again, the writer of Psalm 121 names many ways in which God cares for and takes care of us. It is not we who can solve the problems in the world. Neither will staying in the hills. Like Peter, John, and James on the Mount of Transfiguration, we must follow Jesus down from the mountaintop and into the world, doing what we can to live in Christ-like love and care for others. God will take care of the rest.

Merciful God, forgive me when I fail to trust you. Help me always remember that you are our refuge and strength. Amen.


  1. pallaksch7 says:

    This devotion really spoke to me, thank you Irmgard! -Ole Schenk


  2. Sandra Schuette says:

    Such a helpful reminder to me to put my trust in the Lord. My help comes from Him. Put my eyes on Him and walk in His ways and cast off worries about all that is going on that is out of my control. I am going to read This Psalm for my morning devotion today.


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