I Dare You

Search me, O God, and know my heart!
Try me and know my thoughts!
And see if there be any grievous way in me,
and lead me in the way everlasting!
[Psalm 139:23-24]

Have you prayed a prayer like this before?
Have you dared to ask God to show you “any grievous way” in you?
Have you asked God to lead you “in the way everlasting”?

This is a dangerous prayer, but an awesome one. It is one that leads to transformation. If you pray this prayer with all your heart; meaning every single word, how does God not joyfully grant every aspect of this prayer to you? But this is not a magical incantation. This is not a rubbing of the genie’s lamp.

This is a prayer of faith.

God knows your whole being.
God knows the depths of your heart.
God knows your secret sins.
God knows every skeleton you hide.
God HAS searched you and knows you.

So that is not the issue but rather God making this known to us; that we may know that God knows. And knowing that God knows and that God has not left us; that is powerful. That is grace. And when I see that God sticks with me even though God has searched me and has found everything I would rather keep hidden, I am lead to be better. I am drawn closer to God.

Not out of fear but out of love.

And so this prayer is about God,
revealing that which does not bring God glory;
revealing that which draws me away from God.
revealing that which darkens my path, so much so, that I don’t faithfully follow.
And then revealing His grace.

So since God knows you better than you know yourself, confess your sins but don’t stop there. Don’t just rack your brain for sins to confess, but listen as God reveals to you ways you have disobeyed and then receive those “grievous ways”; confessing them as well.

And upon hearing amazing grace: My child, I forgive you. The next part of the prayer is about God leading us in the way everlasting.  This is the repentance part. Confession and absolution falls short if there is not a desire to repent. That’s just cheap grace. And so upon confessing and hearing forgiveness, pray for God to lead you into repentance; “in the way everlasting”.

Wow, what a dangerously awesome prayer.

So I dare you to pray it and then I dare you to listen. Go ahead I dare you. God is waiting to transform you.

Holy God, search me and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me,and lead me in the way everlasting! In the name of Jesus, Amen.

The Pastor -|—