Friday, October 27, 2006

Forgiveness


Psalm 51
selected
Have mercy upon me, O God, according to Thy lovingkindness;
according unto the multitude of Thy tender mercies, blot out my transgressions.
Wash me thoroughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.
For I acknowledge my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me.
Against Thee, Thee only, have I sinned and done this evil in Thy sight,
that Thou mightest be justified when Thou speakest,
and be clear when Thou judgest.
Behold, I was shaped in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.
Behold, Thou desirest truth in my inward parts;
in the hidden part Thou shalt make me to know wisdom.
Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
Make me to hear joy and gladness,
that the bones which Thou hast broken may rejoice.
Hide Thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities.
Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.
Cast me not away from Thy presence, and take not Thy holy Spirit from me.
Restore unto me the joy of Thy salvation,
and uphold me with Thy free Spirit.
O Lord, open Thou my lips, and my mouth shall show forth Thy praise.
For Thou desirest not sacrifice, else would I give it;
Thou delightest not in burnt offering.
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit;
a broken and a contrite heart, O God, Thou wilt not despise.
The first part of this Psalm is so desperately hard to read - it is the really bad news. God sees my sin. We don't like to look that hard at our own sin, do we? It makes me really, really uncomfortable. Like David, the Psalmist, I need to look at my sin truthfully, confess it openly to God, and turn from it. That is when I see clearly the utter beauty of my God, and the amazing blessing of His love and forgiveness. The hard looking produces something more wonderful than I can imagine - re-creation, a thorough washing, a clean heart, a renewed spirit, and joy! joy! joy! so much joy that my heart overflows with praise for The One Who has forgiven me. God doesn't love me any more or any less when I acknowledge my sin - He just loves me. Facing my sin head on, and seeking His forgiveness is for my heart's blessing. This week I have been very blessed!

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