1 O Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me. 2 You know when I sit down or stand up. You know my thoughts even when I’m far away. 3 You see me when I travel and when I rest at home. You know everything I do. 4 You know what I am going to say even before I say it, Lord. 5 You go before me and follow me. You place your hand of blessing on my head. 6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too great for me to understand!
Not only does God know who we are but He also knows:
- What We Do – Vs 2-3
Verse 2-3 says: “You know when I sit down or stand up. You know my thoughts even when I’m far away. 3 You see me when I travel and when I rest at home. You know everything I do.” The two opposites of sitting and standing represent all of our actions. God knows every move we make, just as Proverbs 5:21 says, “For a man’s ways are in full view of the Lord, and He examines all his paths.” Regardless of whether we are awake or asleep, sitting or standing He knows everything we do. God is familiar with all of our ways, He is fully aware of what is going on in our lives. The fact that God knows every detail of our lives can be both a comforting thought and a convicting one. Comforting, because not only does it reveals that He cares, but also because He knows the true motives of our heart. When others questioning our motives and misjudge or misrepresent us, God knows the truth. There is a comfort in knowing that when we are falsely criticized God knows our hearts. But this can also be convicting, because it also reveals that we can’t hide our hearts from Him. We may be able to con and convince others, but we can’t fake out the Father. God is fully aware of everything we do and nothing escapes Him. You see some of us are putting on false fronts, pretending as if everything is fine and while we may fool each other we are not fooling God. Some of us are being very careful to look around and make sure no one will see us but are we looking up? Nothing is hidden from Him. Not only does He know what we do, but He also knows:
- What We Think -vs 2b
Verse 2 goes on to say: “You know my thoughts even when I’m far away.” This word to know or to discern literally means to winnow. David was drawing an example from everyday life, where unlike today’s farming that is done with sophisticated combines, then the winnowing of grain was done by hand and would have been a common sight. To winnow grain one would toss it in the air so that the wind could blow away the chaff and leave the seed behind. In the same way God “winnows” our lives, He sift our lives and sees every detail, so that our lives are fully known to Him. But this knowing not only refers to what we think, but also why we think it. God knows not only our motives but our aims. He knows the heart behind the head even when we don’t always understand our own intentions. He knows all about our thoughts, what we are thinking as well as why and also how they will affect us. Yet there is another amazing aspect to what God knows here, for it says He, “knows our thoughts from afar, or when I am far away” Not only does God know our thoughts from afar off as from heaven, but He also knows our thoughts even when those thoughts are afar off from us. He knows our thoughts even before we ever think them. He understands our thoughts thoroughly, knowing our thoughts even before we think them. 400 years before Christ, the philosopher Socrates famously said, “Know thyself” and people have been trying to do that ever since. But do you realize that the best way to get to know yourself is to get to know God, because God is the only One who fully understands us. God knows what we do, He knows what we think, and also knows:
- What We Say – Vs 4
Verse 4 proclaims: “You know what I am going to say even before I say it, Lord.” God knows our words even when they are on the tip of our tongues and they haven’t yet been spoken. Sometimes we don’t even know what we are going to say until it is out of our mouth, and when we think of all the foolish things we have said sometimes we wonder why we even say the things that we do. These words may have caught us of guard but they never took God by surprise. Not only did He know what I was going to say even before I said it but He never stopped loving me, even when I said stupid things that I later regretted. He kept on loving me because He is Yahweh the covenant-keeping God. Think about this reality, that God knew that you were going to yell at your kids before the words ever came out of your mouth. He knew all about the selfish, unloving and insensitive words you would say to your wife. Or the rude and sarcastic words you would speak to your husband. He knew, and yet He kept on loving us, because His love is unconditional. You see there is nothing that you can do to make God love you more than He does right now. This kind of love should motivate us to speak words of mercy, words that bless and not break. Words that edify and encourage not words that criticize and cut. Are your words blessing or bruising the people who hear them? We have a God that knows what we do, what we think, and what we say. Where in your life do you need to take comfort from this truth and where in your life do you need to be convicted by this truth?