“…you are familiar with all my ways.”
Psalm 139:3 (NIV)
Years ago when my children were small, my brother and sister delighted in telling them stories about how bad their father was at their age. It seems that I was the proverbial black sheep of the family. My siblings wondered how their brother could grow up to be a preacher of the Gospel. How could someone who was so actively evil turn out to be a good citizen of society?
I am aware that I wearied my parents with my deviant behaviour. Among other things, I was dismissed from cub scouts for misbehaving and the parents of some of my friends were concerned that their children played with me. The glorious hymn writer John Newton, who wrote Amazing Grace, summed up my life as a child in the opening lines of another hymn he wrote:
In evil long I took delight, unawed by sin and shame,
Til a new object struck my sight, and stopp’d my wild career.
My mother was a godly woman and from the time I could first read had me memorizing whole chapters of the Bible for rewards. I went to four church services every Sunday, two were geared for children my age and two were preaching services for adults. So thoroughly taught was I in the Scriptures that I won every Bible knowledge contest I entered. A Bible and a story book I won when 7 years old were both inscribed with the words, “The youngest and the best”.
Then the Lord used several things to awaken me to the knowledge that He saw my godless ways. Somehow when we do evil we often think that no one is looking. Jesus once said that people, “love darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil.” John 3:19. The cover of darkness hides many sinful actions. Somehow even criminals prefer to commit their crimes at night and/or wear masks to hide themselves from their victims.
Everywhere in the Bible it is taught that God sees all of us always. Nothing we do, say, or think, can be hidden from our Creator. He who made us with eyes sees us. The One who gave us ears with which to hear, hears all that we say. God, who gave us minds with which to think, knows all our thoughts (Psalm 139:2). Nothing about us can be hidden from God.
For those who suffer this is a very comforting truth. God knows all about our sorrow and so we can come readily to Him and pour out our complaint. He is moved at the sight of our pain (Hebrews 4:15). Jesus suffered in so many ways when among us. So when we pray to Him and describe our difficulties He recalls similar situations He faced here on earth. Therefore He comforts His children who pray in times of affliction as no one else can.
When I woke up to the fact that God saw my godless ways, I was led to the Scriptures that taught me to confess my sin and be forgiven. God opened my eyes to the truth and then gave me grace to come to Him for mercy. There was no where to hide.
Now as I walk with the God who sees, I am comforted in all my trials in the knowledge He sees me and comes to my rescue. So the truth that God sees me always led me first to the cross. Now that same truth leads me all my journey through until I see the gates of heaven and hear my Saviour’s “Welcome home.”
May the truth that there is no where to hide from God do for you what it once did and still does for me.