Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting (Psalm 139:23-24).
What would happen if we started every day with this prayer? How different would our lives look?
Vulnerability is difficult. It requires a great deal of humility and trust especially when we face challenges that are more personal than we are comfortable sharing. Weaknesses can be hard to admit, and I think this is especially true when it comes to talking with God.
Vulnerability is not one of my strongest qualities. It’s hard for me to talk about personal struggles with others even if I do trust them. I would much rather exhibit my strengths than my weaknesses even though I know God is glorified through those weaknesses.
I have been blessed over the years with several close friends who challenge me to drop the façade that everything is always OK and force me into a place of healthy vulnerability. They are the friends who ask me on a consistent basis what God is doing in my life or how I really feel about certain situations. They get me to open up even when I don’t feel like talking about those things. They don’t accept answers that are only surface deep. You may have friends like that and can relate to what I mean.
While I’m learning to be more open, I still lack a consistent vulnerability before God. It’s an interesting statement when I think about it because God already knows how I feel.
For God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything (1 John 3:20).
The times when I approach God with vulnerability are those times when I am the most broken. That is not to say my prayers are not always sincere, but there is a stronger, more heartfelt longing for God and His Word when I reach breaking points in my life.
I can’t help but wonder how different my life would look if my heart were more aligned with God’s heart. It’s hard for me to approach God about struggles or decisions before they become overwhelming. I know there are times when I am afraid of the changes and challenges God may have in store for me or what He might reveal about my character.
Teach me your way, O LORD, and I will walk in your truth; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name (Psalm 86:11).
Maybe we’re only vulnerable before God when we are truly open to what He will do in our lives. Giving our struggles up to God usually means we’re in for some big changes or some big challenges. Maybe it takes getting us to a breaking point before we’re finally willing to let go of the plans we have for our lives and follow God’s call to something new.
I know my relationship with God would be a lot stronger if I invited Him to evaluate my life daily in such a no-nonsense way. I would have to be willing to hear His report and be open to making changes in my life. Starting each day with such an emphasis on who God is would make me more careful to make sure my thoughts and actions align with Scripture.
When I think about asking God to point out the areas in my life that need the most work, I almost don’t want to know what He would reveal to me. I don’t think any of us enjoy working through our hardships and raw emotions, but imagine what our lives would be like if we intentionally did it anyway.
When are you most vulnerable before God? How would your life be different if you regularly prayed the prayer found in Psalm 139?