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Search Me O God!

It’s difficult to try to partake in a self-examination. To dissect one’s self, to turn that critical eye back upon myself. An honest reflection only aids to shatter a sense of self worth. Works become trivial, devotions seem few and far between, discipline appears lacking. So why should I bother looking inward? Exactly for these reasons mentioned. This carnal man, over a period of time, will begin to think that I have worked myself into a degree of righteousness. This mind begins to presume that I am intrinsically good, and therefore if I continue what I’m doing, I will accomplish my goals. But that mentality only leads to repetition and complacency. And repetition and complacency will ultimately lead to my demise. So long as I believe I alone have accomplished anything, even the slightest good deed, I have robbed God of the Glory He should receive. And in so doing placed a title of Lord over myself.

Psalm 139-

1O lord, thou hast searched me, and known me.

2Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off.

3Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways.

4For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether.

5Thou hast beset me behind and before, and laid thine hand upon me.

6Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it.

7Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence?

Sometimes if we are not careful, this internal examination can be flawed from the onset, if we refuse to allow the Spirit to lead this examination, then we might as well avoid self examination altogether. For it is the Spirit that will lead us directly to those areas in need of examination. And it is only by the Grace and Mercy of God, and through the Power of the Holy Spirit that those areas of our lives can be changed. Thou O Lord has searched me and known me….despite my hesitancy to openly admit my faults and failures to my brethren, Lord I can’t hide it from you. For you know my laying down, and my rising up, you understand my thoughts! There is nowhere I can turn that you are not there O God.

8If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there.

9If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea;

10Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me. Everywhere I turn Lord, Your guiding hand awaits me.

11If I say, Surely the darkness shall cover me; even the night shall be light about me.

12Yea, the darkness hideth not from thee; but the night shineth as the day: the darkness and the light are both alike to thee.

There is nothing hidden from you, those dark places within me, in which I would never willingly allow another to see, You O Lord have penetrated even these dark tombs of shame, and you have shone your light upon them. In Your light of revelation, you have opened the darkest recesses of this heart to allow me to lay, even these burdens at your feet. For while we attempt to shroud these things in darkness, they are well within your view. And yet, in Your Mercy, you have given me a chance at redemption. By shining Your love in me, illuminating my sins, You also provided a means with which I can be reunited with You, through Your precious Son, Jesus Christ.

13For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother’s womb.

14I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.

15My substance was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.

16Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them.

17How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them!

18If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake, I am still with thee.

Of all the glorious revelations that you provide, perhaps none is more effective than the knowledge that my sins will not be imparted unto me. For my Savior, Jesus, took them with Him upon that cross. And while I was yet in my sin, He chose to offer the greatest sacrifice for me. The ultimate act of Love, so undeserved and unwarranted. And yet, not only did He bear my sins, but has continued to mold me into something beautiful. For He longs to be with me, and I with Him, that He will go to any length to fashion me into the very image of His Son, that image of Love and Compassion. How wonderful to know that my Heavenly Father so longs to be reunited with me in Heaven!

19Surely thou wilt slay the wicked, O God: depart from me therefore, ye bloody men.

20For they speak against thee wickedly, and thine enemies take thy name in vain.

21Do not I hate them, O LORD, that hate thee? and am not I grieved with those that rise up against thee?

22I hate them with perfect hatred: I count them mine enemies.

You have given us a promise that if we abstain from sin, from darkness, that one day we will may obtain that crown of righteousness, and as I think of that day when no longer will we have to endure temptations, torment, sickness and disease, no more sorrow, no more tears, no more longing, and groaning under burdens so heavy, I can’t help to but rejoice more in the thought that one day I’ll be given a crown, and I will take that crown and place it at the feet of my Savior! Oh what a day!

 23Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts:

24And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

Continue to prune me Lord, I pray, though it batter my soul and though I can barely stand it…..I know it is for my benefit, and You do so out of Love for me. Lord help me to bear Your admonishment, and to know that You are the God of my Salvation! Search me O God and know my heart….

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Serve One Another…

“Nothing disciplines the inordinate desires of the flesh like service, and nothing transforms the desires of the flesh like serving in hiddenness. The flesh whines against service but screams against hidden service. It strains and pulls for honor and recognition. It will devise subtle, religiously acceptable means to call attention to the service rendered. If we stoutly refuse to give in to this lust of the flesh, we crucify it. Every time we crucify the flesh, we crucify pride and arrogance.” – Richard Foster
 
 
O God, Allow me to serve in a manner in which You alone receive the Glory. I must continue to die to this flesh so that you might be glorified through it.  If my name and deeds are only mentioned aloud once, let it be when I stand before you on that great day of the Lord so that I may not boast of myself.
 
I pray each of us lose ourselves in service to the Lord.  Let my actions and words be towards you continiously. When people see me, let them Praise You for the work you’re doing in me. Let them not place faith in me, but rather He who is in me. Strengthen me Lord to cast down this prideful heart, to pick up my cross and follow You. Prick my heart Lord so that it may be broken under your admonishment,  yet joyful in admonishment as well. For it is in the moments of correction that you affirm your Promise to me.
I pray this prayer not only for myself, but for each and every one of you so that He alone would receive the reward for His suffering.
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