Psalms 120-134 comprise a collection of short songs of ascent meant to guide Jewish pilgrims in their communal trek up to the city of Jerusalem, and ultimately to the temple mount. The rhythm of the pious ancient Israelites centered round particular festivals, seasons, and Sabbath. Taking the annual pilgrimage to the Holy City was an especially anticipated time of year. This yearly cycle brought both increased faith and needed spiritual stability to the people. It reminded them of the sound theology that God cannot be moved, and he will always be there.
“Those who trust in the LORD are like Mount Zion, which cannot be moved, but abides forever.” One of the most fundamental of all truths about God is that he is consistent and constant in his basic nature, that he is forever present with his people. If God seems or feels as though he is not there or is not listening, it is not that he is aloof or not paying any attention. It simply means that he chooses to reveal himself when he chooses to reveal himself, and that our responsibility in the entire affair is to engage in consistent rhythms of spirituality that place us in a position to receive grace when God decides to give it.
Therefore we must not despair but anticipate meeting with God, just as the Israelites of old looked forward and upward to their annual worship at the top of the mountain. The truth is that God surrounds his people, even when we do not always perceive it to be so.
Ever-present God, there is no place where I can go where you are not. Help me to so intuit your presence that it bolsters my faith and resilience for daily life in Jesus Christ. Amen.