Monday, July 28, 2008

Psalm 51

When David messed up, he messed up big time. He didn't do anything halfway. His adultery with Bathsheba and murder of Uriah marked a very dark time in his life, where he was, no doubt, out of fellowship with God. It wasn't just a few weeks where he was out of step with God, either. He did not repent of his sins until Nathan came to him after Bathsheba gave birth to their son. But when Nathan confronted him with his sin, after David had spent months living in it, David's response was repentance. Not a reluctant admission that what he had done might have been wrong and a statement that he was sorry if he'd hurt anyone. No, David repented like he sinned - wholeheartedly. Psalm 51 reveals David's heart as he comes before the Lord after months of absence. He lays himself bare before the Lord. And even after absence and sin and rebellion, when he returns to the Lord he has not forgotten WHO GOD IS. He KNOWS the Lord - His justice, His mercy. He says in verse 17 "The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart." and that is what he brought before the Lord.

It has been a long time since I have been truly broken hearted for my sin. I would do well to learn from David's example of repentance and fall before my Lord in humility. But how can I expect to be sensitive to my sin if I am not constantly in the presence of the One who is without sin? Reading scripture, meditating on the Word, and being in constant communion and prayer is the only way to make my sin evident, all of my sin, the sins of my heart. Because what I desire is a heart that follows Him and does not go its own way.

Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions. Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin. (Ps 51:1-2)

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