Psalm 139:23 “Search me, God, and know my heart”
Oswald Chambers writes, “We have to get rid of the idea we understand ourselves. It is the last conceit to go. The only one who understands us is God.” Has the Holy Spirit ever surprised you with revelations about yourself? Exposed some hidden sins you didn’t even know existed? How did you react?
Psalm 139 reveals a man who understood there was Someone who knew him far better than he knew himself. The One who formed him in his mother’s womb and breathed life into his nostrils was the One who continued to see every crack and crevice in his heart. Not one single thought remained hidden from his Creator. Not one word. Not one action. God perceived not only what he did but why he did it. And how does David react to this exposure?
“Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain” (verse 6).
David realized self-understanding proved to be an unreliable tool. If he hoped to walk in “the way everlasting” he would need more than Meyers-Briggs to help him see what he was made of. Don’t get me wrong. I think personality assessments and gift evaluations can be helpful. I lived in Boulder, Colorado in the early 70’s. It was a time when introspection reigned. We participated in psycho-dramas, gestalt therapies and encounter groups in hopes of gaining insight about ourselves. And although I did learn a lot about my (emerging) self in those days, I would discover that only God can take us to the depths of who we are and bring us out again.
When God shines light on our souls, it can be shocking. Like Peter, we boast, “I’ll never deny you,” only to have our feeble courage revealed. We think our faith will stand firm and our devotion unshakeable no matter what the enemy hurls our way, only to recognize the true enemy lies hidden in our heart. But God knows it all along. He allows circumstances to surface those buried relics of our human nature not to condemn us, but to make us whole.
Friend, don’t miss this wonderful knowledge David found. Join his cry: “Search me, 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.”