“Look deep into my heart, God, and find out everything I am thinking. Don’t let me follow evil ways, but lead me in the way that time has proven true.”Psalms 139:23-24 CEV
The best gift a leader can give his/her followers is self-awareness. Being self-aware, as a leader, gives confidence to those you lead. But true self-awareness can only come when we place ourselves on God’s examination table.
David was the best leader, though flawed, in Israel’s history. He was a warrior, friend, counsel, and faithful to God.
In Psalm 139, David’s prayer to God gives us an inspired look into the key to being self-aware.
David opened himself to God.
Search Me. A Prayer of Surrender.
When David asked God to look inside of him, or as most of the other translations say, “Search me,” David is letting his words describe his heart’s posture of surrender.
It is not a way to say “I’m not guilty,” but a posture of surrender. To say to God, “Search me, because I’m not without sin,” is a foolish prayer.
But to pray, “search me and see if there is any offensive way in me” is a life-giving prayer when we lay down on the Life-Giver’s operating table.
Expose Me. A Prayer of Humility.
Once I surrender, then I am willing to humbly accept what the Holy Spirit exposes in me. If I’m not surrendered to God, I will be defensive when I’m exposed. But when I’m surrendered to God, in humility, I accept the diagnosis.
When I allow the Holy Spirit to expose the inner-most parts of who I am, exposing the source of my thoughts, the source of my feelings toward others, and the source of my discontentment, then I’m open to receive the healing and grace I need to recover from my brokenness.
This prayer that is not for the weak leader. only the strongest leaders can be exposed to who they are. It’s a strong leader who knows he/she has weaknesses because he/she has already been under God’s microscope. Then, when someone exposes that weakness to him/her, they can say “I know that’s a weakness of mine. Forgive me, or help me.”
An exposed leader is a powerful leader because they are in the place to be led by God.
Lead Me. A Prayer of Dependence.
When we realize that we are limited, the. We can turn to the limitless source of wisdom, strength, and courage to lead us.
When we allow God to lead us, the end result is an unending, life-giving relationship with the Source of Life.
When we experience that relationship with God, we will know how to lead others to experience that same relationship.
It’s through our surrender, humility, and dependence on God, that people will say to us, “Take me to your leader.”