Sunday, May 10, 2015

Not Hidden

You are my God. I worship you.
  In my heart, I long for you, as I would long for a stream
  in a scorching desert. (Psalm 63:1 CEV)

It is appropriate that I am reading Life Unstuck on Mother’s Day. This daily devotional book by Patricia Layton discusses Psalm 139, one verse at a time. I knew I had to read this book, because Psalms 139 is my Psalm. My favorite verses are 13-16:

For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother's womb.
I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it 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 saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them,
 the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them. (Psalm 139:13-16)

These verses are my story. Or the beginning of my story. When my mom was pregnant with me, she had some health issues, and her doctors took some x-rays (they did that to pregnant women forty years ago), but they found nothing. 

When I was six months old, my mom was diagnosed with cancer (multiple myeloma, to be precise). The doctors looked back at the previous x-rays and found things they hadn’t seen before. My mom and dad always felt that God hid the tumors from the doctors while Mom was pregnant, so that she could give birth to me without making any hard choices about keeping the baby or having treatments while pregnant. Mom lived another twenty four years after that diagnosis.

When those tumors were hidden from the doctors, I was not hidden from God. He saw me. He planned every day of my life.

If you had handed me a book on this subject a year ago, I would have yawned at you and said, “I know that!” It is, after all, based on my Psalm.

But this spring I needed to read that Psalm again. And Patricia Layton's commentary on the Psalm is encouraging and nourishing. It is funny and thought-provoking. (I have a feeling I describe all my favorite books in those same words.) I love the way Pat shares her life stories with the scriptures. She shows that the Bible makes a difference in her life. Pat’s humor will make readers want to read several daily sections in a row. I recommend slowing down a bit and really absorbing the truths of Psalm 139.

Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth;
all the stages of my life were spread out before you,
The days of my life all prepared before I’d even lived one day. (Psalm 139:16 The Message)

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