Lent 2013 – day 15

27 Feb

Psalm 139:1-4
O Lord, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord.

Yesterday I was wrote on how David spoke about hating those who sin against God and also how we are called to love “them” because we are just as much sinners as they are.

In verse 2 David speaks about God knowing his thoughts even when He is far away. And yet we know from verse 5 that David knows that God is all around him, that He is omnipresent. So what does David mean by this? I think he is talking about being spiritually far from God, I believe he is speaking about when he sins.

When we sin, we put a barrier between ourselves and God. Our sin puts something other than God at the top of our priorities and this puts a block in our relationship with Him.
However, God is still there. God doesn’t stop being God when we sin! And, because of this, He knows what we are thinking when we put sinful barriers between us and Him. God knows when we are happy in our sin, when we are sorry for what we’ve done and when we are completely clueless as to whether we have sinned or not!

It reminds me of the post-communion prayer in Anglican liturgy:
Father of all, we give you thanks and praise, that when we were still far off you met us in your Son and brought us home.

And this too is a reminder of the story of the prodigal son and how God is shown as the father who is always on the look out for his son and who, even while he is far off, comes running to meet him.

God knows what we are going to do throughout our lives, even before our birth. He knows what we will think and say and do. He knows it while we do it too. Because the barrier that we put up when we sin only works 1 way. It stops us from coming to God, not Him to us. And that barrier means that we just don’t know when God is there. But as soon as we remove it, the Father comes running to meet us!

Today the closing prayer of verses 23 and 24 are particularly pertinent. Verse 24 in particular, which could read “See if there are any barriers I have put between me and You and show me how to remove them and keep them down.”

Search me, O 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.


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Archbishop Cranmer

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