His hand on me

Psalm 139 tells me that God knows everything about me and that he has his hand upon me.

That could be frightening for some people.  For me, it is a word of hope.

Let me deal with the frightening part first.

The Psalmist says that God “perceives my thoughts from afar” and that he knows what I am going to say before I say it.  I can hide nothing from God.

I am not proud of many of my thoughts. At one time or another, I have probably broken all the 10 commandments in my thoughts.  There is enough there to send me to hell for eternity.

But the apostle Paul says in Romans 8:1 that “there is now no condemnation” for me because Christ has died for my sins and the “law of the Spirit of life has set me free from the law of sin and death”.  I am going to heaven, not hell.

Which brings me to the message of hope in this psalm.

Running through this song is the idea that God won’t let me go.  He won’t let me go because he loves me and wants the best for me – which is knowing and loving him.

I can struggle out of his arms but he will pursue me until I realize I can’t do without him.

I have been meditating for several days on the words of verse 5: “You hem me in – behind and before; you have laid your hand upon me.”

That can be seen as a threat – who wants to be hemmed in?  But think about it for a moment.  God is protecting you from behind and leading you by hand.  He is all around you as your loving guide, protector, and friend.

For me, the words “you have laid your hand upon me” are very powerful.  I think of Jesus with his strong hand on my shoulder.  It is the hand of power, of courage, of resolve, of strength – and of love, comfort, and compassion.

It gives me hope and joy just to think of it.  Jesus is by my side.  Nothing else matters.

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