"O LORD, you have examined my heart and know everything about me."
Psalm 139:1 (New Living Translation)
When I was growing up, I would sometimes sneak into the kitchen between meals and make a stop by the cookie jar. I loved cookies, especially my grandmother's old fashioned tea cakes.
Have you ever had those? I don't think they even teach grandmothers to make those anymore. They were always just melt-in-your-mouth deliciousness in a bite. How could I resist?
I would try to be good, but sometimes, I just couldn't help it. I would go too near the kitchen, and before I knew it, I was sneaking a little tea cake, hoping no one would see me, and trying to remember to wipe the crumbs off my face when I finished.
Somehow those tea cakes seemed sweet, but not as sweet as they had been when my grandmother handed me a plateful of them and allowed me to eat as much as I wanted. Somehow, the stolen tea cakes were never quite as delicious because I had to worry about the inevitable question that I was sure would come: "What happened to all those tea cakes?"
Have you ever done something in your life that you thought, "I hope no one ever finds out about that!"
We all have those little secrets. Each of us has those times of shame and pain when we made unwise decisions or did something that we hope no one will ever find out about.
But did you know that God already knows? In Psalm 139, the psalmist reminds us that God knows us and the intents of our heart. Nothing about us is a surprise to God, not even our little secrets.
How freeing to know that the one powerful enough to save us from ourselves and our secrets is the one who knows us the best. With the Psalmist, we can pray, "Search me, O God, and know my heart." God who already knows your heart wants to share your burden. God's love and grace are far greater than any little secret you may have.
Jan McCoy is associate pastor of First United Methodist Church of Covington. She may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.