English Standard Version (ESV)
Search Me, O God, and Know My Heart
To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David.
1 O Lord, you have searched me and known me!
2 You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
you discern my thoughts from afar.
3 You search out my path and my lying down
and are acquainted with all my ways.
4 Even before a word is on my tongue,
behold, O Lord, you know it altogether.
5 You hem me in, behind and before,
and lay your hand upon me.
6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
it is high; I cannot attain it.
7 Where shall I go from your Spirit?
Or where shall I flee from your presence?
8 If I ascend to heaven, you are there!
If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!
9 If I take the wings of the morning
and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
10 even there your hand shall lead me,
and your right hand shall hold me.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me,
and the light about me be night,”
12 even the darkness is not dark to you;
the night is bright as the day,
for darkness is as light with you.
13 For you formed my inward parts;
you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
my soul knows it very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you,
when I was being made in secret,
intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed substance;
in your book were written, every one of them,
the days that were formed for me,
when as yet there was none of them.
17 How precious to me are your thoughts, O God!
How vast is the sum of them!
18 If I would count them, they are more than the sand.
I awake, and I am still with you.
19 Oh that you would slay the wicked, O God!
O men of blood, depart from me!
20 They speak against you with malicious intent;
your enemies take your name in vain.
21 Do I not hate those who hate you, O Lord?
And do I not loathe those who rise up against you?
22 I hate them with complete hatred;
I count them my enemies.
23 Search me, O God, and know my heart!
Try me and know my thoughts!
24 And see if there be any grievous way in me,
and lead me in the way everlasting!
To make a point I want to give you this parody on validation. This scene shows us the power of validation on us. Are you being validated? When was the last time you were validated when it was authentic?
Your Part to Play
belonging, Brené Brown, connection, fear, love, perfection, TED, vulnerability
with Brené Brown, a secularists so far as I can tell. However, her insights on the human psyche and needs are helpful.
Love, connection, vulnerability, perfection, belonging, fear are just a few of the emotions Brene addresses. We followers of Jesus may learn something here.
Christianity, communion, community, Fellowship, Frog, Frog and Toad, Intimacy, Jesus, Jesus Christ, Toad
…in fellowship with one another, like Frog and Toad.
The fellowship among Jesus followers is really meant to be a magical/miracle experience. Please read the beginning of Acts for more information.
care, compassion, Epistle to the Philippians, heaven, Jesus, Paul, Protection
I’ve often read Philippians and know that chapter 2 presents the Jesus model. The Jesus model shows us what He did to free us and have this everlasting life.
I felt I need an image to get my arms around what Jesus did for me. This morning I was in chapter 2 again and I saw it–the image that I needed. In verse 17, Paul says he is being “poured out” as a drink offering for the enlargement of the faith of the Philippians. That’s it!! The Jesus model has the same imagery for me as I look back to verses 5-11. Jesus poured Himself out. He sacrificed all to come to earth for us. He gave up position and power and made Himself lowly. He is the ultimate model of humility. This model we emulate by pouring ourselves out for Him and others.
A brother of mine recently wrote: “I am desiring to pour out what I am. I want to be desperate not only for what dwells with in me, but what dwells in others. I want to impact others, I want to be significant, I want to count.”
We, like Paul, pour ourselves out for the sake of another’s faith. Jesus poured Himself out for a billion people who inhabit the planet right now and who name His Name. He gave up all of Heaven and journeyed to earth so that we might know Him and the Father.
Brotherhood, Commitment, Devotion, Fellowship, Fellowship of the Ring, Frodo, Frodo Baggins, Intimacy, Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, love, One Ring, Purpose of Fellowship, Sam
Do you remember these lines in The Return of the King? Sam demonstrates here the value and meaning of Fellowship in this scene in The Return of the King.
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)
Sam: [Both are overcome by exhaustion] Do you remember the Shire, Mr. Frodo? It’ll be spring soon. And the orchards will be in blossom. And the birds will be nesting in the hazel thicket. And they’ll be sowing the summer barley in the lower fields… and eating the first of the strawberries with cream. Do you remember the taste of strawberries?
Frodo: No, Sam. I can’t recall the taste of food… nor the sound of water… nor the touch of grass. I’m… naked in the dark, with nothing, no veil… between me… and the wheel of fire! I can see him… with my waking eyes!
Sam: Then let us be rid of it… once and for all! Come on, Mr. Frodo. I can’t carry it for you… but I can carry you!
Frodo is exhausted after trudging up the mountain for miles and hours. The Ring is having a great impact on Frodo now. All food and water has been long gone. Sam shows huge determination and willpower as he hoists Frodo on his back and it lifts him the rest of the way up the mountain. They go up the mountain but not without resistance from Smeagol.
Frodo had a task, that was his to perform. Sam was there for Frodo, however, lending support and encouraging Frodo all the way.
I am thankful for my fellowship. These men carry me when I have temporarily lost my way or drifted off path. God places men and women in our lives for that very purpose.
Body of Christ, Christ, Christian, Cloud of Witnesses, Fellowship, Lord of Rings, Lord of the Rings, Satan, Trinity
Through the first theme for the Lord of the Rings, we focused on the awesome God with a grand design inviting us into that design and to be a part of His story. He created you in His image and chose you to be part of His plan. As a man created in His image, you desire to protect and provide, to love and be loved, to give and receive honor, and to express and hear well done. As a woman created in His image, the desire for creativity and beauty are large. Other desires and longing can be found in the heart of a woman, I’m sure some that I listed here for men.
Through the second Lord of the Rings theme, we focused on God’s choosing you and giving you a unique part to play in His Story. He created you, chose you, adopted you and set you apart for His purposes for all eternity. Your life is a praise to His glory. Your part is to reveal Christ right where you live. That begins with being a man or woman who engages with strength and love offering your world life and growth. The way to discover your part is to fully surrender, offer Him your heart, be willing to suffer for His sake so that you might experience His resurrection, life and glory.
Through the third Lord of the Rings theme, we focused on the truth that Evil seeks to destroy and defeat you and take you down. Satan is hunting you and desires to lure you and causing you to loose your way. God, however, meant for you to live in His grand design, His story and the part He created you to play. Satan seeks to steal your part in the Story, kill your heart, and destroy or diminish your influence in your part of God’s world. We are in a battle for our hearts and the hearts of those we love!