Psalm 139

by Laurie Gudim

In Psalm 139 the psalmist speaks the deepest understanding of my heart.  I am sought out and known by my beloved God, accompanied in all my journeys and companioned in all my most dark moments.  She has known me from the earliest moments in my mother’s womb and knit me together in the unique expression that is my being.  I am marvelously made — and profoundly loved.
But Psalm 139 has been used a lot lately to shame and suppress.  It is used in the battle against freedom of choice and in the battle against Queer folk who are trying to embody their truest nature.  This makes it hard for me to hear its wonderful poetry without grief.
I am saved by knowing that God is bigger than all of our boxes.  After all, God created a universe so huge and strange that we will never be able to encompass it.  We’re just too limited in our capabilities.  And so I say with the Psalmist in verse 16:

“How deep I find your thoughts, O God! How great is the sum of them!” 

To think we can limit God to our level of understanding – to the either-or, good-bad dichotomies in which our egos function – is hubris of the highest order.

God has affirmed again and again through my life that They know who they created when They made me.  I was brought into the world as a woman who loves women and who has been a bit gender fluid since before we had a term for that.  God made no mistakes in creating me that way.  God wants – longs with all Their heart – for the authentic expression of all that They set into motion when They brought me into being.

And God is with me in every step in my life.  God delights in how I see – how I reflect God’s world back to God with my unique vision.  So I take profound pleasure in looking at things – ordinary things like the light flickering on the leaves outside my window and unusual things like the enormous splash in the quiet, cobalt ocean that was the aftermath of a just-missed humpback breaching when we were at the Pacific coast earlier this summer.  God looks at them with me – through me – and loves it.  And part of the great mystery of God is that They are doing the same with every other being on this and all other planets with equal attention and love, all the time.  Whew!

God delights in how I function.  God kind of likes it that I am an electronics junkie and that I adore puzzles, that I love the microscope my sister bought for my birthday a couple of years ago and that I am addicted to art stores with all their bright colored pens and paints and textures of paper.

And don’t even get me started on how much God loves a good spiritual direction session, that time when two people are together listening to one another and to God with hearts wide open to  what God wants to communicate.  I imagine that these moments are so delicious that God purrs.

Let Psalm 139 be simply a great celebration of the intimate relationship between us tiny humans and the author of all that is.  Let it not be used to try to limit God.  Instead let it be a gateway into the paradox and mystery of our mind-boggling belovedness.

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