“I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth.” Psalm 121:1-2 (ESV)
I am a reluctant jogger. While I enjoy the emotional, mental, and physical benefits of exercise (in that order!) I don’t particularly like the actual running part. Anybody out there relate?
Still, nothing beats going out for a slow run in terms of low maintenance, low cost, and convenience.
I was visiting relatives recently during a very hot spell, so I headed out early morning for a quick jog. I didn’t quite beat the heat, however, and soon found myself pounding the hot pavement, sweating from, well, everywhere. I was getting really annoyed because my sunglasses kept slipping down my nose. What was most irritating about it was that this wasn’t a new phenomenon. All late spring and summer, whether it was my normal glasses or sunglasses, somewhere on my journey when I was tired and sweaty, I couldn’t keep my glasses up! It takes all my energy just to keep in forward motion (did I mention I don’t LOVE running?!), so having to lift my arm to push up my glasses, like every half second, gets really old. I could just take them off, but, whether it was my prescription lenses or the sun-blocking version, I needed to be wearing them to see clearly and unhindered. So, what was I to do?
That morning, the answer came so simply and quickly, whether from my mind or the Holy Spirit…that I almost laughed out loud.
“Pick your chin up.” What? “Lift your chin up.” Responding to the thought, or voice, or whatever, I picked up my chin, setting my eyes on the distance rather than on the ground right in front of my feet. Immediately, my glasses settled on the bridge of my nose, and as long as I kept my chin up, the glasses stayed put. Miraculous!
Now, maybe you’re thinking, “Are you kidding? How did you not figure that out sooner?” I’ll just say, “I don’t know!” It never occurred to me that gravity was affecting the position of my glasses–that having my head down impacted my ability to see.
It occurs to me that this natural truth has a spiritual application. How often when we get tired or discouraged do we emotionally drop our heads, chin to chest, our vision momentarily hindered as we are left staring at our feet? Think about the last time you found your head hanging down from tiredness or discouragement. What filled your vision? Like me, perhaps you find those moments can keep you from seeing the blessings ahead.
On this journey of life, when times of weariness and stress wear us down and wear us out, it’s important to hear that still small voice instructing us to pick up our chins. We can lift our eyes to the hills, for that is where our help comes from–from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth. He can infuse us with energy and courage when we lift our eyes to Him, restoring our vision and enabling us to clearly see the path before us.
So today, if you’re actually out for a jog or metaphorically navigating the roadway of life, remember to keep looking up! You’ll be glad you did.