You understand me, Lord

Psalm 139 Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed / CC BY-SA 4.0
 
Lord,
you understand me,
you know my every thought,
my brain is not a mystery to you.
Enter into my mind, Lord,
guide and direct my thoughts.
Be before me when I speak,
be beside me when I act,
be within me when I listen,
that I might possess
the wisdom born of love,
for you are love,
the love which understands
everything.
 
Frank Topping, 1937-, English minister and author
 
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O Lord, you have searched me and known me!
You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
    you discern my thoughts from afar.
You search out my path and my lying down
    and are acquainted with all my ways.
Even before a word is on my tongue,
    behold, O Lord, you know it altogether.
You hem me in, behind and before,
    and lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
    it is high; I cannot attain it.
 

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the pursuit of Wisdom

You are wisdom, uncreated and eternal,
    the supreme first cause, above all being,
    sovereign Godhead, sovereign goodness,
    watching unseen the God-inspired wisdom of Christian people.
Raise us, we pray, that we may totally respond
    to the supreme, unknown, ultimate, and splendid height
    of your words, mysterious and inspired.
There all God’s secret matters lie covered and hidden
    under darkness both profound and brilliant, silent and wise.
You make what is ultimate and beyond brightness
    secretly to shine in all that is most dark.
In your way, ever unseen and intangible,
    you fill to the full with most beautiful splendor
    those souls who close their eyes that they may see.
And I, please, with love that goes on beyond mind
    to all that is beyond mind,
    seek to gain such for myself through this prayer.
 
St. Denis prayer, from The Cloud of Unknowing, 14th century
 
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My goal is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, 
    so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, 
    in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, 
    in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.
 

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a prayer for wisdom

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash  

O Lord our God, reveal to us your heart and character so that we in turn will yield our hearts, minds and wills to obey your commands.  It is in listening and hearing from you that we can set our hearts to obey your commands and follow your instructions.
 
We recognize that our craving for wisdom, deliverance, and freedom can only be fulfilled in you, so grant us the patience to listen to your wisdom and the courage to apply our minds to your knowledge.  Our cry in this hour is “that we may know you.”  We understand that to “know you” is a lifelong process.  A lifelong process of seeking after you and a lifelong process of searching for the good in life.  It is only by so doing that we can come to know you, the eternal One, the supplier of wisdom, insight and knowledge.
 
Your help is readily available and granted upon request to those who seek after you.  Grant us the grace of honesty because you are a shield to those who live honestly.  You are our lifeguard and protection from those who act wickedly toward us.  Your light, O God, gives us a clear path to follow and when we walk in that path of life our personhood is solidified, our joy is complete, we survive our trials, and our wicked enemies are destroyed before our eyes.  These great acts we will not forget.
 
Dr. John J. Finn, Pastor in Tennessee
 
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Now then, my children, listen to me;
    blessed are those who keep my ways.
Listen to my instruction and be wise;
    do not disregard it.
Blessed are those who listen to me,
    watching daily at my doors,
    waiting at my doorway.
For those who find me find life
    and receive favor from the Lord.
But those who fail to find me harm themselves;
    all who hate me love death.
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