You See Me, You Know Me
Recently, my pastor did an exercise with our youth group and the youth leaders. He had us all close our eyes and listen as he read Psalm 139 out loud. He asked us to raise our hand when we felt something jump out at us. Reading it again today, I have to say that it is this passage that stands out to me: You have searched me, Lord, and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely. You hem me in behind and before, and you lay your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me attain (Ps. 139:1-6).
Once in a while somebody will ask me what the topic of my blog is. If I had to sum up the content, how would I do that? I once joked with somebody that I would call it “The Diary of a Hot Mess.” I was kidding but it isn’t far from the truth, much of the time. I have heard it said before that men are like waffles and women are like spaghetti. I have heard that men keep their thoughts and feelings in neat and tidy compartments. I would like to know what it would feel like to be able to compartmentalize my thoughts and emotions like that. I definitely get the spaghetti analogy. My thought life and emotional life can be quite chaotic at times. Thoughts run into one another. I can’t seem to separate or distinguish where one thought or idea ends and another begins. My feelings on one subject can influence my thoughts on three other subjects at any given time. Just figuring out how I feel or what I think can be a daunting task. At times, it takes a considerable amount of time and energy and definitely prayer for me to figure myself out. It occurs to me, if this is so difficult for me, how can I expect anyone else to understand me?
That’s why I find the words of this Psalm so comforting and reassuring. I am overwhelmed with gratitude to know that the very God that breathed the stars into existence has taken the time to search out my heart. He knows me. Even typing those words, a sense of peace overtakes me. He understands every thought and feeling. He knows why I do what I do. It says He knows every word I say, before I even say it. He knows all the inner-workings of the heart of this hot mess and He is committed to sticking it out with me for the long haul and helping me to figure out this adventure called life.
I am so aware of my flaws and imperfections. I am well-acquainted with every place in my life where brokenness and disappointment have left their scars. God is aware of this too. He is familiar with all of my ways, both good and bad. However, He assures me that His hand is upon my life. He is at work in my circumstances in ways I couldn’t possibly perceive or understand. He will be faithful to complete the work He started the very day when I delivered my heart into His capable hands.
I struggle with feeling open, vulnerable and exposed more than I would care to admit. I have tried for too long to assume the occupation of defending myself against risk and potential disaster. The Lord whispers into my ear that He is my fortress. He desires to be my protector and my defender. As I navigate risk and tricky situations, He goes before me leading the way. He follows behind me, watching for my blind spots. He keeps me safe. photo credit