In a society driven by uncertainty, we can stand on God’s promise that He is always watching over us. Yet His watching goes far beyond mere observation. God does not stand back simply witnessing the events of our lives. Instead, He enters into our circumstances. He is actively watching over and protecting us.
It’s fascinating to learn about the characteristics of God. These attributes are often called the “omni” qualities of God. He is omniscient (all-knowing), omnipotent (all-powerful), and omnipresent (present in all places at once.) We also understand that God is not bound by a need for sleep like we are. Psalm 121:3 promises, “The One who watches over you will not slumber.” So when cultural tides, political trends, weather events, and personal circumstances are unpredictable, we can live in the certainty that our all-knowing, all-powerful, and ever-present God is constantly watching over our lives.
Psalm 121:8 explains, “The LORD keeps watch over you as you come and go, both now and forever.” Our paths from this very moment to eternity are heavily guarded by our heavenly Father. This doesn’t mean the way will always be easy or without hurdles. But when we encounter difficulties, we can know that God goes before and behind us. He hems us in and offers refuge and respite when needed. Moving forward through life, we can trust that God guides us, as we see in Isaiah 30:21, “And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, ‘This is the way, walk in it,’ when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left.” As we renew our minds in Scripture, God reveals to us His will in perfect time, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect” Romans 12:2. Renewing our minds, lining our thoughts up with God’s, and following His lead, we can proceed confidently as He establishes the way before us as we read in Proverbs 16:9, “The mind of a person plans his way, but the LORD directs his steps.”
When life becomes difficult, silence can heighten our fears. Yet God can use seasons of silence to draw us nearer to Himself and nurture our faith. In Scripture, a beautiful Hebrew word captures the necessity of waiting: qâvâh. Qâvâh means to wait actively with anticipation. When it seems God is not hearing or answering our prayers, we can wait actively, knowing He is faithful. He has not stepped away but is watching over us. As we abide and rest in His protection and seek His truth in Scripture, He will reveal Himself and His plans to us. God wants us to know and understand Him — it’s why He reveals Himself to us through the Scriptures, His Holy Spirit, and creation. Each of these revelations reflect His qualities. We can hold to the promise of Psalm 91:15, “When they call on Me, I will answer; I will be with them in trouble. I will rescue and honor them.”
Notice that in Psalm 91:15, God promises to both be with us in trouble (or in the original Hebrew, distress, affliction, or tribulation) and rescue us. Sometimes, before God saves us from affliction, He enters into those circumstances with us. This is beautifully portrayed in the life and resurrection of Jesus. Romans 8:34 assures us Jesus is at this moment in Heaven interceding for us, “Christ Jesus is the One who died — more than that, who was raised — who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.” This means He goes before God on our behalf and prays for us. And His prayers are powerful because He knows exactly what we need and the heart of God! But before Jesus rose to make intercession for us, He came down to earth to save us. He entered in human form into our circumstances and struggles. He is well acquainted with our conditions, yet John 16:33 assures us He has the victory! We read, “In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”
When we’re unsure of the way ahead or overwhelmed by the world around us, we can rest in God, who constantly watches over us, guards our ways, hears and answers our prayers, and enters into our hardships while interceding for us.