Guard: To keep safe from harm or danger; protect; watch over. In most cases, when scripture refers to God placing a "guard" over our lives, he is saying he is giving us protection, keeping watch, over our lives. When he asks us to "guard" something, he is asking us to keep a particular thing under close watch in order to prevent some kind of misconduct. The protection over our lives comes from God - the prevention of things which might put us in harms way is partly our responsibility - for obedience is paramount to our safety.
GOD guards you from every evil, he guards your very life. He guards you when you leave and when you return, he guards you now, he guards you always. (Psalm 121:7-8 MSG)
GOD - Jehovah - the unchangeable one - places a guard over your lives. The one who is unchangeable in all his promises - incapable of misrepresenting the truth - watches over our every step. The one who is capable of becoming all we need is there with a watchful eye, anticipating our next steps and providing all we will need in the next moments. The God of divine compassion and all holiness is watching over, keeping us safe from harm, in order to keep us whole and holy in him. What we are incapable of doing, he does on our behalf.
Every evil is against us in this world - regardless of whether we are quick to realize the presence of evil or not. The moment we choose to follow Christ, all of Satan's efforts are directed at keeping us from making any progress in our relationship with Jesus. The moment we take even one step closer to intimate relationship with him, the war begins to wage against us. Why? Satan is threatened by us! The righteousness of God within us, the hope of eternity lived out in the presence of a holy God, this threatens him. He doesn't want to live in hell alone, my friends! He hopes for a vast multitude to join him.
Our very life is guarded - not because we might not see the threats and be able to respond to them, but because we might be deceived into believing that evil is good. Remember, all evil is masked with just a little bit of truth in order to get people to buy into it in the first place. If you look at marketing campaigns worldwide, you will realize the power of putting just a little truth up front in swaying people to want your "product". Don't be deceived - Satan is no different in his "sell" tactics in your life! We need this guard, for we may be deceived by the element of truth and miss the all-out lie right under the surface.
Leaving and returning - no movement is outside of God's view - he sees it all and his watchfulness over our lives goes from one movement to the next. He even anticipates our movements, because he knows what we will choose even before we choose. Yet he allows our freewill - the right to choose in spite of the danger in the choice we may make. Why? He doesn't want robots, he wants submitted children. Submission is not a choice to be "lorded over", but a choice to be under the leadership of our Lord. Leaving and returning under the leadership of one so all-knowing and all-powerful certainly places us in a better place of safety than taking steps based on our own wisdom and abilities.
There is no end to his watchfulness. This should give us cause to celebrate, my friends. The moment we say "yes" to Jesus, we say "yes" to his watchfulness over our lives. Here we find rest - in the knowledge that the one who knows us best is in the driver's seat of our lives - protecting, guiding, and providing. Just sayin!