Tuesday, April 28

Four things you need to know about God

Scripture: 2 Samuel 4-5, Psalm 139, Matthew 16


Psalm 139 is one of my favorites.  Here are some of the big ideas in this beautiful song—four things you need to know about God.

God knows everything about me (1-6).  God knows everything I do, everywhere I go (He goes before and behind me), everything I think, and everything I say (even before I say it).  God knows me better than I know myself!

Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too great for me to understand.  

It generates two responses in me.  First, I am awestruck that God who knows me best also loves me most.  This is the ultimate security.  We tend to hide the unsavory parts of us from others, fearing that if people really knew us, they wouldn’t like us.  But God knows everything about you and loves you deeply!

Second, from that secure posture, it motivates me to change. I invite God to search me and change me.  I want anything offensive to God removed from my life.  I’m not covering up any more—I’m owning up and inviting the One who knows me fully to make me better.

God is always with me. (7-11).  There is nowhere I can run, nowhere I can hide from God.  I can never get away from His presence.  He is there—no matter where I go.  Up to heaven, down to grave, across the farthest oceans, He is there.  

Again, two responses.  First, I am comforted.  He is always there for me.  His hand will guide me, His strength support me (10).  I am never alone.  As David said, “Even when I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil for you are with me.” (Psalm 23:4)

Second, I am challenged.  There is nowhere to hide!  “I cannot hide from You.” (12). If you’ve ever been tempted to hide from God, or hide something in your life from Him, it is a fool’s errand.  Give up all hiding, all pretense.  He sees you as you are, right where you are.  Time to be honest!

God created me. (13-16).  I am fearfully and wonderfully made.  We are his workmanship—and He does good work.  He knew us before we were born, and knew every moment of every day before it even happened!  Nothing surprises Him!

Two more responses.  First, I should love God’s workmanship.  Just like I am awestruck by creation when I go outside, I should be awestruck by God’s work when I look in a mirror.  We need to toss the Hollywood version of image, and enjoy God’s creativity.  Each of us is His handiwork—and He does good work.  When you hate your body, you insult your Maker.  You may not be the strongest or prettiest—but you are His, and He loves you and loves the way He made you.

Second, I can trust Him.  He not only knows me inside and out, but He knows my moments and days—they are recorded in His book.  Nothing in my life catches Him by surprise.  He knows my good days and bad—and walks with me through both.

God thinks of me! (17-18)  “How precious are your thoughts about me, O God.  They cannot be numbered.”  They outnumber the grains of sand.  Oh my!  I am always on God’s mind!  He is thinking about me—and His thoughts are good. This one is mind-boggling!  If you feel overlooked or ignored by God, forget that and know that He thinks about you all the time!

This is pure comfort and encouragement.  What or who do I think about?  What or who I love!  I think about those whom I care about.  That’s who God thinks about too.  He thinks about you!

Then the psalm ends with this prayer:

Psalm 139:23–24 Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. 24 Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.

It is a prayer that I pray often.  Search me.  Change me.  It is a prayer of openness, vulnerability, repentance and change.  It’s today’s prayer:

Prayer: Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. 24 Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.