“How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How vast is the sum of them! If I should count them, they would outnumber the sand. When I awake, I am still with You” Psalm 139:17-18.
From time to time as you read the psalms, you come upon a curious word: “Selah.” (No, it’s not a girl’s name!) It means to pause, to take a breath, to soak it in, to slow down and let the truth touch your soul.
The One who knows you best, loves you most.
Take a deep breath …Selah.
Let that thought sink in for a minute.
The One who knows you best, loves you most.
This is the case for Psalm 139. Perhaps in no other place in all of Scripture do you find such a treatise of intimacy. This beloved psalm must have come to David’s mind in the eye of a hurricane. David had as many hurricanes in his world as the Caribbean has between June and November. As soon as one storm passes, another is just on its heels. In the Atlantic Ocean during one hurricane season, there are as many as 16 named storms, many of which develop into full-force hurricanes. For David, the hurricane season lasted 12 months each year. Perhaps you can relate.
Our family had a friend who chased hurricanes for a living; probably not the dream job for every aspiring young pilot! Our friend’s job was to fly into the eye of the hurricane and gather data for the weather forecasters below, whose job was to make accurate predictions of the storm’s path and strength. Though I was just a young lad when I met that pilot, I will never forget his description of the eye of the hurricane and how peaceful and calm it was in the middle of such a violent storm.
Have you ever longed for an “eye in your hurricane”? Psalm 139 is exactly that. You can “fly into the eye” any time you choose as you meditate on the life-giving words of David.
Don’t rush through the eye of this storm. Memorize it. Meditate on it often. There is emotional healing and emotional intimacy with the Shepherd as you allow the Holy Spirit to transfer these tender words from your mind to your heart.
1. Psalm 139:1-2 – “O Lord, You have searched me and known me. You know when I sit down and when I rise up; You understand my thought from afar.”
Jeremiah 1:5 – “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I have appointed you a prophet to the nations.”
The Hebrew word for knowhere is Yada, which means “to clearly understand,” “familiar friend,” “chosen,” “regard,” “understand,” “know well.” Yadabetween God and one of His followers is a covenant term that indicates “a relationship that cannot be broken.” Back to the beginning of this study: “The One who knows you best, loves you most.” What does it mean to you to be known by God in this regard?
2. Psalm 134:3 –“May the Lord bless you from Zion, He who made heaven and earth.”
John 17:3 –“This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.”
In the marriage covenant between man and wife, to intimately know is to “become one flesh” emotionally, spiritually, physically, and socially. In a Christ-centered marriage, the more intimacy you know, the more you love. The longer you know, the more you love. With God it goes so much deeper! It is eternal knowledge. It’s never ending love. It’s love with no bounds; love without limits. In Ephesians 3:18, Paul prays that we might know “the breadth and length and height and depth”of God’s love. How do you describe God’s “intimate love” for you?
How should living in the moment-by-moment knowledge of that love change the way you think and the way you live?
3. Psalm 139:4-6 – “Even before there is a word on my tongue, behold, O Lord, You know it all. You have enclosed me behind and before, and laid Your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is too high, I cannot attain to it.”
What is David feeling as he says, “Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is too high, I cannot attain to it”?
4. Psalm 139:7-10 –“Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? If I ascend to heaven, You are there; if I make my bed in Sheol, behold, You are there. If I take the wings of the dawn, if I dwell in the remotest part of the sea, even there Your hand will lead me, and Your right hand will lay hold of me.”
Describe a time you found yourself in the “remotest part of the sea.” What was it like when God “found you there” and you were seized by His right hand of blessing?
5. 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.”
John 8:12 –“Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, ‘I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.’”
If Jesus lives in your heart, what are these two passages telling you?
6. Psalm 139:16-18 –“Your eyes have seen my unformed substance; and in Your book were all written the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there was not one of them. How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How vast is the sum of them! If I should count them, they would outnumber the sand. When I awake, I am still with You.”
When you get down on yourself, pick on yourself, and point out your failures and weaknesses in your thought life, what would Psalm 139 suggest you do with those thoughts?
How should you view yourself in the light of Psalm 139?
“For I gave you an example that you also should do as I did to you.”From today’s scripture, how does THE Shepherd inspire you to shepherd your flock? John 13:15
“How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How vast is the sum of them! If I should count them, they would outnumber the sand. When I awake, I am still with you.” Psalm 139:17-18.
Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, Supplication