[#pictureLent] March 11: KEEPER

By Rev. Missy Jenson
Tarrytown UMC
Austin, TX

First, read Psalm 121:5-8

When you were a child, did you dream about being a grown-up where you could do what you wanted without any rules or chores? It was so blissful to think of all the freedoms we would have, wasn’t it? And then, we grew up, and reality has set in that now we’ve arrived at adulthood: There are still rules. There are still chores. And now, there’s responsibility … and bills … and jobs … and very little of that so-called “freedom.” From this position, we now look back to our childhood longing for the days when we were taken care of by our guardians, when we didn’t have to worry about making ends meet, when we had time to nap and play and learn. 

In our psalm, we hear that the Lord is our keeper – that God will protect us from all evil, save our life, and watch over our coming in and our going out. For those of us who feel like we just can’t “adult” today, this scripture passage offers comfort and encouragement. It reminds us that, regardless of our age, we are still a precious child of God wrapped in God’s tender, loving care. When we feel the weight of responsibility heavy on our shoulders, we can breathe a sigh of relief knowing we are not alone and our worries and anxieties are seen and known by the One who created us. When the ones we love betray us, our trustworthy God is there. When our dreams have turned to disappointments, God senses our pain and continues to dream for us while working toward a better future for all of creation. When we feel trapped, our God is there to release us from bondage offering us freedom in Christ – freedom to rest, to play, and to learn.

Let us pray: Dear Lord, my Keeper, thank you for this life you’ve given me. When life gets overwhelming today, help me to sense your presence with me reminding me that your love is more than enough to sustain me through whatever comes my way. Protect me; guide me; hold me in your light. Amen. 

Discussion/Reflection Questions:

1.  What did you hope adulthood would be like for you?  
2.  How have you sensed God as your Keeper? 
3.  In our self-reliant culture, it is hard for us to surrender to this idea of being kept by God. What are some ways you can be intentional about letting go of control and allowing God to keep you this week?