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, O LORD, know it completely. You hem men in behind and before, and You lay Your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain. Where can I go from Your Spirit? Where can I flee from Your presence? If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there Your hand will guide me, Your right hand will hold me fast. (Psalm 139:1-10)
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Do you like to know things?
Goodness, I do. I am a planner; I like to know what I am doing and when. Schedules and to-do lists are some of my life-long friends. I’m also a research freak. If something comes up with my kids that I don’t know about, you can bet that I am going to read and read until I better understand the situation.
Maybe that doesn’t sound like you, but I bet this does: Do you want to really know your friends, those who are closest to you? Do you want to know their likes and dislikes, what’s going on with their families, why they might be upset or sad? Do you want people to know you? To have that one friend that can finish your sentences or know by your face how you are feeling?
Each of us were made with the capability and longing for knowledge, though our interests may vary.
Sometimes, though, I don’t feel like I know myself. I get conflicting feelings and thoughts, not sure of who I am or what I am doing. Somewhere between who I was and what I’ve done, and who I hope to be and what I want to do, is who I am now. (You may need to read that again...)
And too often, I feel uncertain; stuck. It is hard to reconcile my life in the now. There are old hurts and struggles that I still get hung up on. Shame. Bitterness. Failure. And there are qualities and goals that I am striving for. Patience. Joy. Security.
Very easily, I can get wrapped up in these thoughts, becoming frustrated and discouraged, never quite becoming who I want to be (or where I want to go). It is hard to grasp what God has for me now.
And maybe you can relate.
"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." (v. 1-4)
This psalm speaks to these doubts. It is crazy to me that God knows me better than my friends, my husband, and even myself.
And He knows you too.
This is so encouraging. It puts my mind at rest and my heart at ease. We are never lost to Him. He knows us. Sees us. Understands us. Rejoices over us. Gives grace to us even when we don’t give it to ourselves.
When we look at ourselves and see shame, impatience, and failure, He knows that is not our identity. When we look at ourselves and feel worthless, He looks at us and sees such worth.
We are clean and white because of Christ.
We must allow these promises to do what verse 5 states: "You hem men in behind and before, and You lay Your hand upon me."
God wants to refocus our thoughts away from the past and future and to the truth of who He is in us. He hems our thoughts inward to dwell on our identity in Christ. For He know what we have overcome and what our potential is. He knows our true qualities even when it feels like we have none that are good. Our circumstances, struggles, and sins change over time, but He is constant.
This truth is sometimes hard to believe especially when we don’t know what is coming next in our lives or why. But “such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain.” (v. 6)
You see, we cannot know everything. In fact, focusing on what we do not know instead of trusting Who knows it can make us lose sight of God and His sovereignty.
We question if He is really there; if it’s really what is best for us; and if He really does care. We blame God for our situations and our lack of faith. But really it is not His fault. Our neglect of recognizing His presence is what keeps us in this place.
"Where can I go from Your Spirit? Where can I flee from Your presence?" (v. 7)
There is no place (physically, emotionally, or mentally) where He is absent from us.
He is there in the best moments of life and those we wish we’d forget. He is there when things are all good and when they are falling apart. He is there when we celebrate and there when we fail. He is there during laughter and mourning, in confidence and insecurity, and in assurance and fear.
His love and presence does not require us to be better, just to be still. I challenge you this week to seek to know God; to be still in His presence.
We would love to know: What have you learned about yourself through growing in your knowledge of God? Feel free to answer in today's Instagram post! You can find it here: Instagram.com/DeclareGlory.
Kate, Declare Glory