As you quiet yourself for this brief time, be willing to be open to God in whatever way that may take place.
Psalm 51:1-17 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
To the leader. A Psalm of David, when the prophet Nathan came to him, after he had gone in to Bathsheba.
Have mercy on me, O God,
according to your steadfast love;
according to your abundant mercy
blot out my transgressions.
Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
and cleanse me from my sin.
For I know my transgressions,
and my sin is ever before me.
Against you, you alone, have I sinned,
and done what is evil in your sight,
so that you are justified in your sentence
and blameless when you pass judgment.
Indeed, I was born guilty,
a sinner when my mother conceived me.
You desire truth in the inward being;
therefore teach me wisdom in my secret heart.
Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
Let me hear joy and gladness;
let the bones that you have crushed rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins,
and blot out all my iniquities.
Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and put a new and right spirit within me.
Do not cast me away from your presence,
and do not take your holy spirit from me.
Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
and sustain in me a willing spirit.
Then I will teach transgressors your ways,
and sinners will return to you.
Deliver me from bloodshed, O God,
O God of my salvation,
and my tongue will sing aloud of your deliverance.
O Lord, open my lips,
and my mouth will declare your praise.
For you have no delight in sacrifice;
if I were to give a burnt offering, you would not be pleased.
The sacrifice acceptable to God is a broken spirit;
a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.
“Run the Right Direction”
Focusing Idea: Rather than run from the Lord when we sin, we should run to God.
Scripture calls King David a man after God’s own heart, but even he, committed an appalling sin. Our text for today records David’s prayer of repentance after being confronted about his sinfulness. You recall the story: David was on his rooftop one afternoon when he saw a woman bathing and sent his servants to get her. Even though she was married to Uriah, a man faithfully fighting in David’s army, the King seduced her. From this adulterous encounter came conception, so David sent for Uriah to return from the battlefront so he would sleep with his wife, making everyone believe that the child was his, but Uriah refused to do so because his fellow soldiers were still waging war. Then David acted even more wickedly by arranging for Uriah to be killed in battle. Next, David married Bathsheba; sadly, their child passed away shortly after birth. Oftentimes when we sin, we feel deep guilt, conviction, and condemnation causing us to withdraw from God in an attempt to hide in our shame; David initially did the same. However, no matter what we have done, we should run towards God with these words on our lips: “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me.”
Gracious God, we praise You for Your never-ending mercy. We thank You that we can run to You confessing our sin, crying out for forgiveness, pleading for a clean heart and a right spirit, and in Your steadfast love, You both hear our plea and grant our desire. Amen.
Go with God!