Known and Not Alone

Jessica Bratt Carle

Read: Psalm 139

Where shall I go from your Spirit? (v. 7)

Not only does this psalm offer a beautiful image about how we are known even before birth by our Creator, it also assures us that the Creator does not simply turn us loose to fend for ourselves throughout our lives. The God who made us is the God who remains our companion for all our days. At the heights of joy and even at the depths where we are beset by evil, says the psalmist, God’s Spirit is there with us. Whether we’re living through heaven on earth or hell on earth, God is accompanying us. At times, it can be difficult to perceive that a loving God is really there, watching over our comings and goings. “Where were you when . . . ?” we may ask God, with no easy answers.

Sometimes in hindsight we see where and how God was present with us in the valley of the shadow of death. One way that we often experience God’s presence is through the actions of others. “Everyone came out of the woodwork,” parents often tell me when sharing the story of how their families and communities and even strangers responded to a child’s life-threatening diagnosis. Human kindness can be a beacon of God’s loving presence for those who may be feeling abandoned by God in the midst of a difficult time. In whose life can your simple gestures and heartfelt words of support begin to mean so much? —Jessica Bratt Carle

Prayer: May we be your hands and feet to those in need of comfort.