Thursday, July 30th. Psalm 139:13-18

“For it was you who formed my inward parts; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; that I know very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes beheld my unformed substance. In your book were written all the days that were formed for me, when none of them as yet existed. How weighty to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! I try to count them–they are more than the sand; I come to the end–I am still with you.” Psalm 139:13-18

What happens when we read these verses as “people” rather than just as a “person”? How would that change our experience of the world and our actions within it?

As a person, you would think these words to be water on dry ground. Self acceptance is a very difficult thing for us in our dominate culture. We who have bought the farm of modernity have also bought into all of its marketing messages. We have lost a sense of our “self-ness” and unconsciously accept the culture’s assessment that we are what we do, or we are what we have, or we are what we look like. We’re left feeling too fat or too short or too tall or too poor or not rich enough or our hair isn’t right or our clothes aren’t in fashion. It gets exhausting trying to keep up with the Jones’!

Then comes the word, comes the Word, that tells us that we have been “fearfully and wonderfully made.” The Word which tells us that the God who creates us also loves us and accepts us as we are. JUST as we are. Loves us enough to take the bullet of the cross for us. We are fearfully made and fearfully loved and when that message sinks deep into us we finally catch a glimpse of the goodness of God that is in each of us.

It is good news – this news of our uniqueness, splendor and beauty. And it is bad news – because it reminds us how often and how easily we exchange the glory God has given us for junk food and junk lifestyles and junk attitudes/actions. This becomes our walk, the journey of being loved and learning to live like it.

Now what happens when we read these verses as “people”? When we join the rest of creation – plants, animals, fish, birds, reptiles, insects, and human beings of every color, culture and creed – and hear the word, the Word, that we are all “fearfully and wonderfully made”! Something changes, doesn’t it?

Suddenly, just as the journey of self acceptance fills our hearts with gratitude, as difficult as that journey is for us, to see the entire cosmos with such eyes does the same thing. To see every person in every other car on the way home from work today as a precious child of God. To see every tree, every blade of grass, as God’s handiwork, opens the world to us.

To see all of humanity as a brother or sister, to see all of the created world as a relative – isn’t this part of the worldview of a Christian? It is certainly part of the creed and the worldview of the Oglala Sioux – that we are the People and the world around us our relatives. This changes everything!

It reminds us that we aren’t alone. It reminds us that the world around us and its people are meant to be enjoyed, to share, to enrich one another, not to abuse, use, manipulate or destroy one another. It reminds us of God’s concern, care and provision for our lives.

Regardless of our distinctions and our differences, our “createdness” links us to others. How we understand and live in that is our spirituality which takes so many different shapes.

We are also linked by our common pain. More on that tomorrow.

Let us pray: Gracious Lord, our Creater, Redeemer and Sanctifier – is it true? Is it true that you not only give us life but also sustain our lives and promise at the end to bring us home to you? Is it all true? If it isn’t, then we are hopeless and despair is our only path. But if it is, then lead us each day to realize this wonderful news anew, to let it fill us and sustain us and drive us in the love and justice we show to others. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

2 Responses to “Thursday, July 30th. Psalm 139:13-18”

  1. Stella Says:

    Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful writing! I am going to read this every day for one week, aloud, and believe it more and more.

    Thanks for this gift!

    Jo in MN

  2. peteherbalifex76 Says:

    Exactly what I was looking for, appreciate it for posting . “There are many victories worse than a defeat.” by George Eliot.

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