“Do not put your trust in princes,

in any child of Adam, who has no power to save. (…)

How blessed is he who has Jacob’s God to help him,

his hope is in the Lord his God” (Ps 146:3,5).

The invitation that our Father addresses to us time and again to trust in Him in everything and completely, is accompanied by the warning not to seek the existential security of our life either in princes or in any man.

Indeed, the Holy Scriptures – and life itself – teach us that we must not look for false securities, let alone build our existence on them. Everything fades away, only God remains. “Sky and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away”, Jesus tells us clearly (Mt 24:35).

God shows us great love by freeing us from all illusions, because it is imprudent to trust in the created. Even princes, of whatever kind, and the people around us, however close they may be, do not exist by themselves; they have received life and are therefore limited.

God’s invitation to trust Him fully introduces us to the reality of life; to that reality which has always existed and remains forever. It frees us from the false expectations and hopes we often place in other people. It takes us out of our own fantasies and illusions, which we so easily associate with other persons.

At the same time, it makes us more merciful towards others. Indeed, it is impossible for people to live up to our expectations when we expect from them something that only God can give. When we act in this way, we not only live in an illusion, but we impose on others a burden that they cannot bear. As a result, we will easily be disappointed or even despise others when they do not correspond to our false expectations.

On the other hand, if we place all our hope in God, we will know how to treat other people with realism and also with mercy, without ever idealising them. Thus, the divine warnings contained in the psalm become for us a lesson of delightful wisdom, which frees us if we heed it.