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 paths; you are familiar with all my ways. ~ Psalm 139:1-3
God wants to know us. God is searching us. Investigating. Digging in and drilling down. “O Lord you have excavated me.” God already knows David’s hopes, dream and joys. God knows David’s’ failures, fears and sins. God knows all about David. And God knows all about me. When no one else notices – what no one else bothers to know about me – God searches me out. God is endlessly fascinated with me. What a great way to start a prayer, “O Lord you have searched me and know me. I am an open book to you… ” I want to talk to this God. And Listen.
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 to attain. Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? ~ Psalm 139:5-7
It is an awesome thing to be known by God. To be excavated, investigated and hemmed in. Hemmed in not like a big bear hug or a protective bubble wrap but more like a city under siege. “You besiege me, O God. You have me surrounded.” This is not a God we order around. This is not vending machine God waiting for our token prayer to dispense an answer. This is the God who knows us, knows the path marked out for us and keeps us on track. There is no running away or hiding from this God.
Is there anyplace I can go to avoid your Spirit? to be out of your sight? If I climb to the sky, you’re there! If I go underground, you’re there! If I flew on morning’s wings to the far western horizon, You’d find me in a minute— you’re already there waiting! ~ Psalm 139 (The Message)
There is no getting away from this God. God is with us everyday.
Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. ~ Psalm 139:23-24
Here is the core of David’s everyday prayer. He can never be free from God… and so David surrenders. In reality David can’t help but pray because David is in relationship with a God who already knows everything, everyday and always. Let us pray.
A recipe for killing weeds:
One gallon vinegar, a cup Epson salts, on cup of blue Dawn dish washing soap.
Worked like a charm on my weeds. Nothing better than a dead weed.
Have a great weekend.
Jesus tells a story about wise and foolish builders. Both builders work diligently to build a home. They labor long and hard. The wise builder builds his home on a rock solid foundation. The foolish builder builds his house on shifting sands.
After the building is completed the wise and foolish builders move in and they live comfortably in their homes for some time. No problem. And then one day the storm sirens wail. The storm howls and the house built on the rock stands strong. The storm blows and the house built on the sand falls flat.
One builder thrives. One does not. What kind of builder are you?
As kids we used to sing a song about these builders – with hand motions. I remember getting some kind of perverse pleasure out of slapping my hands together when the house falls flat. Today when I see the kinds of storms people face and when I see how often homes fall flat it makes my heart ache.
Jesus introduced this story with these words: “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.” (Matthew 7:24)
In the Christian sense, love is not primarily an emotion, but an act of the will. When Jesus tells us to love our neighbors, he is not telling us to love them in the sense of responding to them with a cozy emotional feeling. You can as easily produce a cozy emotional feeling on demand as you can a yawn or a sneeze. On the contrary, he is telling us to love our neighbors in the sense of being willing to work for their well-being even if it means sacrificing our own well-being to that end, even if it means sometimes just leaving them alone. Thus in Jesus’ terms, we can love our neighbors without necessarily liking them. In fact liking them may stand in the way of loving them by making us overprotective sentimentalists instead of reasonably honest friends. ~ Fredrick Buechner
What we’re talking about here is not just our tendency to lurch and stumble and screw up by accident, our passive role as agents of entropy. It’s our active inclination to break stuff, “stuff” here including moods, promises, relationships we care about, and our own well-being and other people’s… ~ Francis Spufford