One reality I think every human being on earth can agree with is that this year, 2020 has been and continues to be full of surprises. We see the best and worst of humanity on display. I asked God this morning, “is this something new? Should we be worried that we’re on a downward spiral in the way we act and talk to each other? In the way we talk about and act toward you, Lord?” Then, in the sweet and gentle way God always responds to my inquiries, He directed my thoughts to Psalm 139. Friend, I hope you will take a few minutes to open God’s Word and read this beautiful reminder of just who our LORD is, how vast are His ways, and how intimately He knows you and me.

The paradox of the message is that God knows each one of us, inside and out. He knows our thoughts, our intentions, and the very depth of our heart even more than we know ourselves. Included in this revelation is the most amazing fact, that He, overwhelmingly, loves us anyway!

Another reminder from God is how our behavior toward each other and toward Him is nothing new; humans have been on a “downward spiral” ever since creation, in the Garden of Eden where everything was “perfect,” except for the humans. Our demand for autonomy has been “the wind at our backs” ever since. So much bickering. So much “noise” about who in our society is most righteous, or most vile. Who is taking the high road, or the low road among us?

So, where is the encouragement in this message? “Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Hebrews 4:16, NIV.

Thank you, Jesus, that you do not leave us helpless. You tell us to “approach [your] throne of grace with confidence…” Not the shallow confidence revealed by our autonomy, rather the confidence offered through the cleansing of your blood. Amen.