Search Me, Know Me
I was reading Psalm 139 today, a psalm that has been so healing to me over the years. “Oh Lord, You have searched me and know me”, a beautiful opening to the living words that follow. “You know my sitting down and my rising up; You understand my thought afar off.” Oh how the Lord knows everything we do, and He knows all our thoughts! “You comprehend my path and my lying down, And are acquainted with all my ways.” And He not only knows what we’ve done, what we’re doing, and we’re going to do, but He fully understands our heart’s reasons why we do it! “For there is not a word on my tongue, But behold, O LORD, You know it altogether.” Even when we can’t articulate the heaviness in our hearts, or we can’t produce the question that we need answered, He knows it. He knows it all! But somehow in our limited understanding of our own inner workings, we fear being vulnerable, we fear being exposed because in our minds, if we let the monster out of its cage we won’t be able to get it back in there. We will be face to face with the very thing we’ve shoved deeper and deeper into the abyss of our heart, relying on time as our healer. But really, this feeling of being vulnerable before God is really just a lie we buy into, as though He will reject us when He finds out what we’re hiding beneath all our protective layers. How can you be vulnerable with a God who already knows everything about you? The very One who can help you, is the One you avoid.
To come into the realization that you don’t have to fix yourself, you don’t have to figure it all out, that you don’t need years upon years of psychotherapy, but instead, can find everything you need in THE Counselor Himself who knows us in the most intimate way is completely life changing. Even when our self-constructed fortress of coping mechanisms is in place to protect ourselves, even when we keep God at a distance and deny Jesus access into our mess, God still knows the inner workings of our soul. Even when we choose everything else besides Him to be the answer, He knows. He knows our stories, He knows our thoughts and all the whys behind the whats, and even if it takes a lifetime, He will continue to woo us into His goodness and loving-kindness so that we can be touched by Him. We can be healed and changed once and for all. To be whole. It is His great pleasure and desire to hide you inside the safest place in existence – His love. As I was reading along, I came upon Psalm 139:11-12:
“If I say, ‘Surely the darkness will overwhelm me, And the light around me will be night, Even the darkness is not dark to You, And the night is as bright as the day. Darkness and light are alike to You.’”
That word “overwhelm” translates in the Hebrew as “bruised”. So many of us walk through life with a bruised heart that was caused by the darkness we’ve experienced in our lives. These bruises can ache so intensely or just maintain a dull existence with an occasional outburst to remind you it’s still there. They can bother you to the point of needing relief, even forcing desperate measures, which many times come in the form of antidepressants, alcohol and drugs, toxic relationships, busyness, you name it. And you may find a quick fix in some of these vices, but somehow the pain always manages to rise back up to the surface. It becomes a repeating theme in life, the very thing about ourselves we don’t like but can’t seem to change. But what seems like darkness that’s overwhelming you, or bruising you, is never too dark for God. Be it light or dark, He has searched you and knows you and He can see it all. Nothing is hidden from Him! And as the psalmist says “Darkness is not dark to Him”, because He is bigger and more powerful than any of our brokenness, yet so loving and tender and patient and comforting that when invited in, He will come right into our pain and deliver us, as if the wound never existed in the first place. He doesn’t just take it away, but He replaces it with something so much greater – His Love.
The hope that we have for this healing of our bruised hearts is found in the prophetic words about the anticipated Messiah, Jesus, in Isaiah 53:5:
“But He was wounded for our transgressions,
He was bruised for our iniquities;
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,
And by His stripes we are healed.”
And then again in Luke 4:18-19 as Jesus reveals himself as the fulfillment of this promise that had been given hundreds of years earlier in Isaiah 61:1:
“The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are oppressed;
To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD.”
This very promise Jesus proclaims is fulfilled at the Cross where He took OUR bruises and broken hearts and oppression, so that we could be free and be made whole. The Cross is God’s ultimate show of His love for us, in that He judged every sin, every curse, every sickness and death in the body of Jesus. Jesus took the judgement we deserved, the punishment we should’ve had, so that those who put their faith in Him and His finished work, receive ALL that Jesus deserves being counted as righteous and forgiven, fully blessed and treated by God as though we are Jesus himself. Because as Christ is, so are we in this world (1 John 4:17). It is not something we keep trying to get, but it’s something we already have. Just receive it freely knowing that Jesus did it all for you and there’s nothing more for you to do except to see it is finished – just believe and receive!
Healing a Bruised Heart – Part Two is the continuation of this article. It is a personal testimony in light of Psalm 139.