I have this theory that becomes more of a certainty to me every day and it’s this: The ultimate longing of every human is to be seen, known and loved.
That’s it. That’s what we want and what we need. We need to know that there is someone out there who knows the real us, understands why we are the way we are and remains inexplicably crazy about us.
Take a sec right now if you would, close your eyes and answer this one question (we’ll do this a lot during our time in 139): Who in my life has ever made me feel seen, known and unconditionally loved? (The answer might be “no one” and if it is, I’m so sorry – but I’m also excited for you to find the love you’re looking for in the only place it can be found.)
Throughout my life, I’ve scraped and clawed for that kind of love from good and bad sources – but honestly, even the “good” sources – like the most incredible parents in the universe or two amazing husband – are not able to pull it off completely. There remains a supernatural longing that can only be filled by a supernatural source.
Enter…Psalm 139:1. David’s awe-filled anthem about the height, depth and breadth of the love of God. It is stunning right out of the gate:
Lord, you know everything there is to know about me. (Passion Translation)
You have searched me, Lord, and you know me. (NIV)
O Lord, You have examined my heart and know everything about me. (NLT)
O Eternal One, You have explored my heart and know exactly who I am. (The Voice)
Up until now, my first reaction to the idea of Him seeing and knowing me has not typically been joy…it’s been fear. The idea of anyone knowing everything about me makes me a little queasy. And that queasy feeling? It’s a huge obstacle to experiencing His love fully and freely. Honestly, it’s one of the biggest obstacles we’ll face in this journey.
Story time: In my early career as a *bookkeeper, the company I worked for was **audited. The tax guy came (I’ll always remember he wore a slightly purple suit because the 80’s were pretty awesome like that) and sat at a makeshift desk behind my desk and sifted through receipts and ledgers for three full days. Even though he never found anything wrong, the tension in the office was palpable every second of his visit, and I don’t think it was just the color of his suit that was unsettling. We knew he was examining us with the intent of finding mistakes.
One year later, our first child was born. My husband and I laid together in my hospital bed, holding that little blonde bundle and looking at every perfect detail on her entirely perfect face. We counted fingers and toes, we smelled her little head, we cried and marveled and vowed that never, no, NEVER shall any boy be good enough for this princess of a girl.
My point is: David is not extolling the praise of God-our-Tax-Examiner. He is in awe of God-our-good-good-Father. Our Father who sees and knows us, who marvels over our faces our gifts and our beauty. I get that it’s hard to believe – we’ve been our own tax auditors for so long, it’s hard to imagine someone looking in love at all the mess we see. But, that one truth is fundamental to believing anything else at all about the love of God. We must be willing to die to the lie that God is out to catch us and come alive to the truth that He is crazy in love with us. Will His love sometimes bring correction? Sure. But the truth in first position is always: Love. He sees us and knows us and loves us – even when He wants more for us than we want for ourselves.
That’s enough for today. But we’re not done with this verse yet. There’s so much more to discover in 139:1. (If you pulled out that old notebook and want to scribble down some thoughts about this – I’ve included a journal prompt at the end.) Next up: How to fight the lie that puts God out of reach. It’s gonna be so good.
Journal prompt: What is your first reaction to the idea that God sees every part of you, knows the heart of you and loves the entirety of you? Is this reaction built on truth or a lie?
*I know, shocking, right? I also cannot believe anyone let me go near numbers.
**The company was not audited because of my poor bookkeeping skills, however.