“Unto You I lift up my eyes, O You who dwell in the heavens. Behold, as the eyes of servants look to the hand of their masters, as the eyes of a maid to the hand of her mistress, so our eyes look to the LORD our God, until He has mercy on us. Have mercy on us, O LORD, have mercy on us! For we are exceedingly filled with contempt. Our soul is exceedingly filled with the scorn of those who are at ease, with the contempt of the proud.” Psalm 123
As a child I remember saying at times, “Nobody loves me.” I truly felt that I was not loved. But now as a parent I hear my child voice the same distress call, yet in my wisdom I have learned the deeper meaning of what those three words are really saying.
From the perspective of a child the world focuses around the child. To the child, she is the center of the universe and all else that is encountered in the world must align to her philosophy. The life of a child becomes bent on making this philosophy work because it is the basis of all truth in her life. Yet, in trying to live a life according to her misconstrued philosophy, her life becomes more and more of a battle of her will against the will of ultimate truth – that is God’s will. Over time then, if this girl is not instructed or led to a life that clearly shows her how to make the transition from self-centered truth to God-centered truth, the remainder of her life becomes a frustrating battle against an obstacle she can never hope to overcome. The reason is, she is not supposed to overcome it. Rather she is supposed to give into it, to learn to love it, to find comfort in it, and to dwell on the perfection of it. So too are we and our children called to transition into a God-centered life based on His truth and will because that is where the battle stops and the peace of God begins.
Maybe lately you have been feeling like the child and voicing to yourself, “Nobody loves me” or “God doesn’t love me because….” (you fill in the blank). Or maybe your child or someone else who is close to you has been voicing these distress calls. Have you ever thought that maybe the center of their thoughts are off the mark and not on the One who “dwell[s] in the heavens”? These thoughts or voiced distress calls are symptoms of a misaligned life philosophy which needs to be realigned with God’s truth.
Psalm 123 holds a good reminder when our focus becomes self-centered instead of God-centered. The psalmist reminds us to lift our eyes onto God who dwells in the heavens, to watch God for any movement He makes to indicate how He is working and showing mercy to us, and to rest in Him and not the judgment of the world around us.
It is then in keeping our eyes fixed in the right place that we learn we are loved beyond measure by a God who pours out mercy we could never begin to comprehend. In keeping our focus on God we find real meaning in all that transpires in life. In letting go of trying to change our situation and instead resting in God’s ability to work through our situation we discover a God who loves us too much to let us slide by living in our self-centered ideologies.
God loves beyond measure, but the key to accepting His love is letting go of what we consider love to look like.