“O Lord, you have searched me and known me. You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from far away. You search out my path and my lying down, and are acquainted with all of my ways. Even before a word is on my tongue, O Lord, you know it completely.”
– Psalm 139:1-4
Ruth Haley Barton, author of Sacred Rhythms, puts it this way:
“This may point to the fact that the real issue in self-examination is not that I am inviting God to know me (since he already does) but that I am inviting God to help me know me.”
I love how she puts this – absolutely love it.
On my own, I don’t want to invite God to help me know me, especially if that involves processing through issues that are extremely hurtful. I’d rather just not go there, if you know what I mean. Life hurts enough as it is when you’re just living it, let alone examining it.
In not allowing myself to struggle with my tendencies to believe Satan’s lies in certain areas and/or to acknowledge my propensity to sin in certain areas, I miss out on fully knowing God and becoming more like Him. I miss the point Jesus was making when He said He came for us to only only live but live life more abundantly (John 10:10).
On the other hand, upon daily expressing my utter need for Him, and through filling my mind with Truth, I combat both my insecurities and sin habits. I feel redemption. I feel whole. I feel close to the Father, take an active part in my sanctification and begin to know better the plans He has for me, plans that give me a hope and a future (Jer. 29:11).
To know those plans, I must sacrifice my human desire to shun pain and/or not admit I am capable of sin, and instead fully embrace my need for Him. By doing so when it comes to the former, I am trusting that the Lord will heal the pain that inevitably comes from living under the Fall, even when that emotional pain seems too hard to bear sometimes. For the latter, I am admitting I can do nothing right in the sight of God without constant renewal through the work of the Holy Spirit.
I want to really know myself – the good, the bad and the ugly. I want to live life more abundantly, even if that means I have to admit that more bothers me than I let on, that I’m not as good on my own as I’d like to think, that there is more inside of me that is holding me back from true surrender than I want to admit. I want to be whole.
Jesus, help me know me, so I can leave me in Your hands and know You will redeem, in Your time, in Your way.