You know me, Lord. Jeremiah 12:3
I recently saw a photograph of Michelangelo’s sculpture Moses, in which a close-up view showed a small bulging muscle on Moses’ right arm. This muscle is the extensor digiti minimi, and the contraction only appears when someone lifts their pinky. Michelangelo, known as a master of intricate details, paid close attention to the human bodies he sculpted, adding intimate features most everyone else would miss. Michelangelo knew the human body in ways few other sculptors have, but the details he carved into granite were his attempts to reveal something deeper—the soul, the interior life of human beings. And, of course, there Michelangelo always fell short.
Only God knows the deepest realities of the human heart. Whatever we see of one another, no matter how attentive or insightful it might be, is only a shadow of the truth. But God sees deeper than the shadows. “You know me, Lord,” the prophet Jeremiah said; “you see me” (12:3). God’s knowledge of us isn’t theoretical or cerebral. He doesn’t observe us from a distance. Rather, He peers into the hidden realities of who we are. God knows the depths of our interior lives, even those things we struggle to understand ourselves.
No matter our struggles or what’s going on in our hearts, God sees us and truly knows us.
What makes you feel alone, isolated, or unseen? How does it change things to realize that God knows you?
Dear God, this world can be a lonely place, but I’m astounded at how truly You know me. It fills me with wonder and joy.
Jeremiah 1:1 reads, “The words of Jeremiah son of Hilkiah, one of the priests at Anathoth in the territory of Benjamin.” This opening for the book gives us a surprising amount of information about this prophet—information we don’t receive about some other prophets in the Old Testament. He’s of the Levitical priestly line and starts his journey as a resident of Anathoth, a village a few miles northeast of Jerusalem—a city given to Aaron’s descendants (Joshua 21:15–19). His father, Hilkiah, was himself a priest who no doubt would’ve expected his son to follow in his footsteps. Jeremiah, however, pursued his calling as a prophet rather than following his father as a priest. The name Jeremiah can mean “Jehovah establishes or exalts” or “Jehovah hurls down.” That last option may in fact speak into the prophet’s message, which has to do with God’s judgment of Jerusalem and the Southern Kingdom of Judah.