GET CONNECTED with our CHURCH FAMILY … responding to human need

Monday, March 18

Psalm 121 (NRSV)

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.


Psalm 121 was sung by pilgrims making the journey to Jerusalem, perhaps as they approached the mountains that surround the city. It is a call and response, done in the presence of other travelers—“From where will my help come?” one would call out, and others respond, “My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth!” It easy to imagine a group calling these verses back and forth to each other.

This brief psalm is only eight verses, but there is one word that appears nearly as many times—keep(er). God is described as our keeper again and again. Keeping is different than helping or enabling, and it’s not controlling or directing either. Keeping something implies a deep and all-encompassing care and devotion. It also implies that there is something worth keeping. That God is our keeper reveals the magnitude of God’s love for us—each one of us is worth the attention that God delights in giving.

The question in response to our divine keeping now becomes—how can we be each other’s keepers? As we consider the themes of hospitality and service this Lent and as we enter into Holy Week, we may ask ourselves these practical questions a little more intentionally. How can we be keepers to those in our congregation? How can we be keepers to those in our community? How can we be keepers to those in our nation and world, especially those whom the world has forgotten to keep at all?


Gracious God, thank you for keeping us, from our going out to our coming in and forevermore. May this gift be a call to your people to keep each other in your name. Amen.

Lizzy Steel