“Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me and know my anxious thoughts; and see if there be any hurtful way in me, and lead me in the everlasting way.” - Psalm 139:23-24
What is the impact of a spiritual awakening? Much has been written on this subject, but Del Fehsenfeld Jr., the founder of Life Action Ministries, summarized it by saying, “Revival awakens in our hearts an increased awareness of the presence of God, a new love for God, a new hatred for sin, and hunger for His Word.” A fresh encounter with God changes how we see Him and how we see ourselves.
Today’s verses from Psalm 139 give us a glimpse into the heart of a man named David in the midst of his deep longing for spiritual awakening which included a recognition of his own sinfulness. The raw honesty within these verses over personal sin provide a real-life example of a man who sought the Lord in desperation and ultimately experienced the amazing, restoring, undeserved grace of God. From the life of David, we discover several attitudes of the heart that are present when we truly long for spiritual awakening. First, when we long for awakening, there is a willingness to be totally honest before God – “Search me”(v. 23). Second, when we long for awakening, there is an inviting of whatever it takes to be right with God – “try me”(v. 23). Finally, when we long for awakening, there is a complete submission to the way of God – “lead me”(v. 24).
God deeply desires for us to experience victory over sin and for our lives to reflect His holiness. Moment-by-moment by His grace, He seeks to remove the impurities in our lives that grieve Him, hurt us, and hurt those around us. Because while sin can in no way change our eternal relationship with God, it can impact our daily fellowship with Him. In his book, Because We Love Him, Clyde Cranford said,
“Our relationship with God is not in question. Through the blood of Jesus we were released from all our sins: past, present, and future, and thus enabled to have a relationship with God. Our fellowship is nevertheless hindered by unconfessed sins, which must be dealt with all along the way. Christ’s shed blood continues to cleanse us from the sins that hinder our fellowship with Him on a daily basis.”
Our sin is dark and deep, but our God is gracious and faithful. As we begin 2019, may we yearn for spiritual awakening. In true desperation, may we ask God to search us, try us, and lead us.
In conclusion, take some time to read and reflect on the following questions:
- Am I being honest with God about everything in my life? See Matthew 5:8
- Am I sensitive to that which grieves the heart of God? See Psalm 19:14
- Am I allowing God’s Word to be the standard for my behavior? See Hebrews 4:12-13