Psalm 139

You search me and 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.

There are many parts of my story that I race past,
holding my breath lest they raise their heads
and show me up for who I fear I am.
Small things that grow from my hidden corners,
swelling, filling, misshaping me.
Things I am told, looks that I catch in the eyes of another.
The leaping of my heart as heat rises and dizziness flows.
They grow and overwhelm, forcing me back into their dark places.
Deep into my shame I have sunk.

You search me and 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. 

In the night my spirit wakes and taunts me,
The voices that tell me I can do no good, that I have no value,
That remind me of my failings, of my weakness,
of my splinters and shards.
The faces that stare with eyes which condemn and dismiss me,
That look with disdain and judgement, that puncture my faith.
The sneers and comparisons, the taunts and the jokes.
Deep into my shame I have shrunk.

You search me and 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.

In the morning I face myself in the mirror and see what I have done.
My past actions overwhelm me and change what I see,
They tell me I am wicked, they tell me I am ugly,
They drown my goodness, they suffocate my beauty.
They fight to own and define me, and too often they win.
They become who I am and what I may be.
Deep into my shame I have grown.

Where can I go from your Spirit?
Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast.
If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me
and the light become night around me,”
even the darkness will not be dark to you;
the night will shine like the day,
for darkness is as light to you.

Your eyes search me,
You know my heart.
See through my shame,
See deep into my hidden places,
See through my deepest fear and pain,
Show me what you see,
Show me the me you created,
Show me the goodness you know is there,
Show me the strength I cannot feel,
Show me the beauty I cannot see,
Show me the light in my darkness,
Show me the music in my soul.
Help me to release the things I have done which I have let define me,
Help me to release the things that others have done to me that crush my spirit,
Help me to know the difference I make for others,
Help me to trust the difference you make in me,
Help me to be the me you see,
Help me to be the me you love,
Help me to recognise myself in you.

For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

Mother and Father God,
Creator, Redeemer, Comforter,
Search me, know me, love me,
Help me to search myself,
Help me to know myself,
Help me to love myself.
Forgive me for the things I have done that shame me,
Forgive me for the things I regret not doing,
Forgive me for not trusting in your grace and love.
Help me to accept total forgiveness,
Help me to live from this day without guilt or shame,
Help me to trust in your grace and love,
Lead me forward in peace and new life.

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.

 

Mark Berry 29/03/2019

Sections from Psalm 139 New International Version (NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.

 

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