Pay attention to the tension in your body. Let go of it and any expectations to do anything other than God’s will today. Prepare yourself to hear God’s word.
Psalm 25:1-10 (NRSV)
To you, O LORD, I lift up my soul.
O my God, in you I trust;
do not let me be put to shame;
do not let my enemies exult over me.
Do not let those who wait for you be put to shame;
let them be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous.
Make me to know your ways, O LORD;
teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth, and teach me,
for you are the God of my salvation;
for you I wait all day long.
Be mindful of your mercy, O LORD, and of your steadfast love,
for they have been from of old.
Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
according to your steadfast love remember me,
for your goodness’ sake, O LORD!
Good and upright is the LORD;
therefore he instructs sinners in the way.
He leads the humble in what is right,
and teaches the humble his way.
All the paths of the LORD are steadfast love and faithfulness,
for those who keep his covenant and his decrees.
The psalmist is remarkably clear in understanding God’s mercy and love and truth and faithfulness, and he is confident in trusting that God can forget his sins and transgressions yet still remember him. He comes to God expecting to be shown the paths that God would have him walk, anticipating walking in humbleness but not in humiliation, knowing that shame will have no permanence in his journey.
These are bold statements by our psalmist. Can we sing this psalm on our own behalf? How sure are we that God’s grace and mercy and love extend to us in spite of any and all of our transgressions? Can we ask God to both forgive and forget our sins, or do we carry the memory of those sins, wrapped in shame, around with us, a reminder of our need for forgiveness, never fully believing that God’s forgiveness is complete? Can we forgive and forget when others wrong us? God calls us by our name, not our sin. Can we do that for others? Can we seek to see each other as God sees us, beloved, redeemed, and whole?
God of mercy and grace and forgiveness, Grant us the love that sees in others that which you see. Help us to see beyond our failures, our shortcomings, our sorrows, and to remember that as we come humbly closer to you, you guide us and teach us your ways. Remind us that we are yours and your forgiveness is complete. Strengthen us to love, and to forgive, others as you do us. In Christ Jesus, our Redeemer, we pray. Amen.
Go with God!