Second Sunday in Lent, February 25

Second Sunday in Lent, February 25

Scripture: Psalm 139: 1-6

O Lord, you have examined my heart
    and know everything about me.
You know when I sit down or stand up.
    You know my thoughts even when I’m far away.
You see me when I travel
    and when I rest at home.
    You know everything I do.
You know what I am going to say
    even before I say it, Lord.
You go before me and follow me.
    You place your hand of blessing on my head.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
    too great for me to understand!

Some thoughts:

     Do you ever get nervous when someone comes too close to you? I don’t mean stare but rather someone who knows too much at our deepest level, you know, the parts we hide from everyone. Most of us are a little uncomfortable because deep down we know what’s in us at the core and we’d rather no one find out what those unseemly parts are. Only God knows us at this level. As we read the first five verses, we see a picture of transparency. It is fair to say there is no one on earth who is as “. . . familiar with all my ways.”

     We are not even familiar with all our ways! We do too many things without thinking! Yet we have a God who cares about us and knows who we are. He is aware of our physical movement, all the things we think, where we rest, what all our habits are. He knows what we will say before we say it. He protects us and guards us as we move in our paths. My guess is if we could always visually see God’s nearness to us, we would be shocked! We tend to forget the presence of the Holy Spirit. Yet, we have a forgiving God who absolutely cares and is committed to us despite our failures.

     David’s response is that this is wonderful news. Is it yours? In this season of Lent where we reflect on our lives and on what Jesus has accomplished in his journey to the cross, we need not carry the baggage of guilt and shame. We’ve all met people who insisted on carrying years and even generations of baggage and shame for something that happened to them or someone in their family a long time ago. That baggage is actually part of their current identity, perhaps causing them to hang on to it out of fear as to who they really are. That obsessive self-focus is debilitating. That person may even be us. God has laid his loving hand upon us, not in anger but as a tender Father who loves his children. Read the passage again noting the verbs associated with God’s knowledge of you . . . searched, know, perceive, discern, hem me in, laid your hand. If you ever wonder who you really are, it would be a good idea to ask God to show you. Our identity comes from him and through him . . . and, he’s right beside and in you! And his hand is on you. How wonderful to know and feel the hand of God.

Music: “Nearer My God to Thee” Rooted in Christ


God be in my head,

And in my understanding;

God be in my eyes

And in my looking;

God be in my mouth

And in my speaking;

God be in my heart,

And in my thinking;

God be at my end,

And at my departing.

Old Sarum Primer, 1558