This verse offers us such an intimate understanding of our total dependence on God and his uniquely personal love for us. “You knit me in my mother’s womb.” The image is so homey, so personal. In it we have the image of God bending over us, “knitting” our physical form together with total concentration, creating our inmost being, and breathing his own image and likeness into us. What a beautiful statement of love.

I once read a powerful theology about conception, pregnancy, birth and motherhood. The woman author wrote about the moment of conception taking place in the “sanctuary” of the mother’s womb. In that sacred moment only three beings are present, the mother, the new child, and God. The moment of conception is the miracle of miracles. It is the great miracle of love. At that moment a unique human life begins in its fullest sense. In that moment an utterly unique person comes into being, whose life has meaning—and purpose. Indeed, that person bears the divine spark of God within. Life! It belongs to God. Its origin is in love. Faith tells us that we have a responsibility to foster this love, this life, to defend it with love.

As parents, our vocation is to be God’s loving surrogates, loving our children, nourishing them, teaching them about God and his plan for us. The best way for a father to love his children is to love their mother, and vice versa. What God has begun, we are to love and care for with all of our being. We are to forget ourselves in service to our children. After all, this is what God has done for us in Christ Jesus. By loving our children we are honoring God, who is author of life. And it is his grace that sustains and strengthens us throughout our lives.

Because God is the source of all life, in particular, all human life, he is also the goal of that life. This verse from Psalm 139 specifically, and very pointedly, refers to God’s intentional and parental love for us. It speaks to the intimate relationship and personal care that he has for each one of us individually. David’s words here express an awe that can only be expressed in simple imagery. David’s awe is a proper reaction to God in light of this powerful insight expressed in this verse. It is rooted in a hard won humility. In faith, just like David, we also sit in holy awe of God’s love for us.

Lord, help us to grow in our understanding of your love for us, from the moment of our conception to our natural deaths. Help us to live every day of our lives as your loving, good and faithful servants. We pray this in Jesus’ name. Amen!

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