Encouragement from Psalm 139

PSALM 139:

1 O Lord, you have searched me and you know me

2 You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.

3 You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.

4 Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord

5 You hem me in – behind and before; you have laid your hand upon me.

6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; too lofty for me to attain.

7 Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?

8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.

9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea,

10 even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.

11 If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light will become night around me.”

12 even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you

13 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb

14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

15 My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place.  When I was woven together in the   

    depths of the earth

16 Your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them  

    came to be.

17 How precious are your thoughts , O God! How vast is the sum of them!

18 Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand.  When I am awake, I am still with you.

19 If only you would slay the wicked, O God! Away from me, you bloodthirsty men!

20 They speak of you with evil intent; your adversaries misuse your name.

21 Do I not hate those who hate you, O Lord, and abhor those who rise up against you?

22 I have nothing but hatred for them; I count them my enemies.

23 Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.

24 See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead in the way everlasting.

LET’S BREAK IT DOWN:

Omniscient = means “all knowing”.  David, the writer of this Psalm, is fully aware that God is “all knowing” or “omniscient”.  God sees all, knows all, understands all, creates all, and is everywhere.  I like how this chapter can be broken up into a few different segments and applied to different situations in our life. 

Verses 1-6:

1 O Lord , you have searched me and you know me

2 You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.

3 You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.

4 Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord

5 You hem me in – behind and before; you have laid your hand upon me.

6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; too lofty for me to attain.

These verses set the scene for the chapter by David acknowledging God’s omniscience and ability to KNOW ALL.  David is not asking anything in prayer from God, but he is praising his powerful works and again acknowledging what God is capable of doing.  God searches our inside and out.  He knows everything our heart feels, our mind thinks, and our tongue says.  This is a scary thought because we don’t always think and say godly things!  However, I don’t think David was writing this as a warning for others to watch their thoughts, he was writing as a form of comfort for himself that he has a God who knows him so well, who loves him so much, and who is there for him to protect, guide, teach, and comfort.  These six verses could be applied as reminder of what a powerful God we have, but also how much he cares specifically for us.  He wants fellowship with us, he wants an intimate relationship with us, and he seeks us, searches us, and knows everything about us.  We are that important to him, he knows everything about us. This is a comforting scripture for those who feel alone.

Verses 7-12

7 Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?

8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.

9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea,

10 Even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.

11 If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light will become night around me.”

12 Even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.

These verses make me think of those who are moving, going into uncharted territory, starting new adventures in life, and may be fearful of what’s ahead.  No matter we go, God’s Spirit and presence will always be there with us and guiding us.  I like the verse “…if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there you hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.”  I think of my friends who are moving across the world for missionary work, and how God’s hand will be there guiding them and holding onto them.  There’s nowhere on this earth or in heaven that God cannot find you, or go with you, or even go before you and prepare the way ahead.  You are never alone when you have God on your side:)

Verses 13-18

13 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb

14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

15 My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place.  When I was woven together in the  

    depths of the earth

16 Your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them 

    came to be.

17 How precious are your thoughts , O God! How vast is the sum of them!

18 Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand.  When I am awake, I am still with you.

Love, love, love these verses here.  It is a very commonly used scripture for babies since it is talking about God creating us in our mother’s womb. Really, it serves as a reminder of how wonderful and beautiful we are to God. These verses can serve as an encouragement to someone who is lacking self-esteem and self-worth.  Someone who feels unloved, not special, left out, or unworthy of more to life can read these verses and be lifted up.  Because God created us from the very beginning of life…he ‘knit’ us together, carefully creating us with each little detailed step…that automatically makes us wonderful!!  David says, “…your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”  He knows that anything God creates is wonderful! That means us!  We were never hidden from God’s sight, he saw our unformed body and he already ordained all of our days ahead of us….before we even entered this world.  No one cannot feel unloved or unworthy after reading that.  He thinks about us ALL OF THE TIME.  His precious thoughts toward us are more than the grains of sand on the earth.  Wow!! No one on earth , no matter how much they love you, can beat that.  

Verses 19-22

19 If only you would slay the wicked, O God! Away from me, you bloodthirsty men!

20 They speak of you with evil intent; your adversaries misuse your name.

21 Do I not hate those who hate you, O Lord, and abhor those who rise up against you?

22 I have nothing but hatred for them; I count them my enemies.

David is under attack and angry at the evil men who want to kill him.  He asks God, “Do I not hate those who hate you, O Lord?” He knows he shouldn’t hate, but he does.  He has hatred in his heart because they hate the Lord.  In these next verses…he works it out with God.

Verses 23-24

23 Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.

24 See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead in the way everlasting.

David asks God, knowing that he can do this, to search his heart for anything impure, unholy, unrighteous, and for God to show him any offensive way in him.  He wants God to bring to his attention anything that is in his heart that stands in the way of him walking the narrow path, and living a life of righteousness in Christ.  We all have ‘junk’ in our hearts that isn’t from God.  We were born into sin, and our human nature is to sin.  God’s shown me many offensive things that are in my heart.  When he does, it’s not fun, and hurts a lot, and makes you feel awful.  But he shows you those things to tell you…”Get rid of what’s blocking you from living a fuller life in Me.”  Pray and ask God to search your heart and see if there is any offensive way in you.  He will refine you like gold to get rid of the impurities, so you can be a better reflection of Him!

LET’S SUM IT UP:

These scriptures tell us how fearfully and wonderfully made we are.  They remind us that God is always thinking about us, loving us, and guiding us.  He is with us wherever we go.

If you spend too much time trying to see yourself through the eyes of other people, you miss out on seeing yourself through the eyes of God and how he truly sees you.  You miss out on moving forward with who God wants you to be.  You get caught up in “who you are in people” and spend too much energy in performing, acting, hiding, and trying to keep up.  It’s exhausting and usually disappointing. God knows what’s in your heart, you can’t fool him.  He sees the deepest, darkest parts of you and still LOVES YOU!! The precious thoughts he has towards you outnumber the grains of sand.  He can and wants to reveal to us what’s in our hearts that is standing in the way of walking a faithful path of righteousness with him.  When we start to live by “who we are in God”, we are free from the burdens and chains of performing, impressing, and caring about what others’ opinions of us are.  When we know our worth and value in Christ, we don’t need to create our worth and value through our jobs, status, titles, or positions.  We aren’t seeking praise from other people to remind us we are wonderful….we already know we are wonderful because we are created by the MAKER OF HEAVEN AND EARTH 🙂 !!!

 

2 thoughts on “Encouragement from Psalm 139

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