What is needed to sustain life? That’s an easy question. The basics include food, water, and shelter. But beyond physical life, the question isn’t so easy. Our human condition is one of brokenness. We are helpless in so many ways. We are aimless, wavering in the wind. We are ignorant, not sure of what is true or what matters.
Psalm 107 gives us an idea of what is needed to sustain our spirit, in addition to our bodies. “Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom he has redeemed from trouble” (verses 1-2). This addresses our helpless state. We don’t have to redeem ourselves. He has redeemed us from trouble. Note that this particular Psalm doesn’t address the kind of trouble; it uses the word generally. This can be applied to all of our situations! No matter what kind of trouble we’re in, God will help us.
The Psalm goes on to say, “Some wandered in desert wastes, finding no way to a city to dwell in” (verse 4). There’s our aimless state, and the Psalmist resolves it quickly: “[God] delivered them from their distress. He led them by a straight way till they reached a city to dwell in” (verse 7). We don’t have to find our way on our own. God has a direction for us, and he will guide us down the right path.
Lastly, the Psalm addresses our ignorant state. “He satisfies the longing soul, and the hungry soul he fills with good things” (verse 9). God knows that we are ignorant and that we want to know what is true and important. Therefore, he gives us knowledge not only for our minds, but for our souls. He gives us the truth and the things that matter most to us.
With our help, direction, and knowledge coming from the Lord, we can say with the Psalmist, “Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever” (verse 1). The steadfast love of God gives us steadfast life that we can always rely upon!