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Well, bless my soul
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"Our help is from the LORD, who made heaven and earth."
Psalm 124:8 (New Living Translation)

When I was growing up, people used to say things like, "Well, bless my soul." I think back to those expressions that we don't really hear anymore. I long for those days. You see, today, people have a tendency to say other things, most of which cannot be repeated in polite company and respectable newspaper columns. Think about it. Years ago, when someone did something that was unbelievable, someone's grandmother was bound to say, "Well, bless my soul." And people had a tendency to notice God's hand working behind the scenes when unbelievable things happened.

Those verbal expressions from days gone by symbolize a kind of society that may be on the way to extinction - the kind of society that looked to the Lord for strength and help. In the first few verses of Psalm 124, we get the same sense of looking back at the past and seeing God's divine hand at work. In essence, the Psalmist says that if the Lord had not been helping Israel through the years, the fate of that nation would have been disastrous, and they would have been swallowed up and utterly destroyed by the enemy.

How many times in our lives have we seen God at work in circumstances around us? Have there been times when you have been in the right place at just the right time to help someone else who was in dire circumstances? Has someone come along at just the right time to help you in a time of trouble? Did you chalk it up to mere coincidence or did you say, as did the Psalmist, "If God had not been watching out for me, the results would have been completely different."

When looking back at those times, we can proclaim as the Psalmist did, "Our help is from the Lord, who made heaven and earth." Isn't it comforting to know that the one who created the entire universe is the one who can help us through even those troubles that we can't see?
Where can you see God at work in your life today? Well, bless my soul.

Jan McCoy is associate pastor of First United Methodist Church of Covington. She may be reached at