Psalm 51

Psalm 51:1-19

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 only, have I sinned
    and done what is evil in your sight,
so that you may be justified in your words
    and blameless in your judgment.
Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity,
    and in sin did my mother conceive me.
Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being,
    and you teach me wisdom in the 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 broken rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins,
    and blot out all my iniquities.
10 Create in me a clean heart, O God,
    and renew a right spirit within me.
11 Cast me not away from your presence,
    and take not your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
    and uphold me with a willing spirit.

13 Then I will teach transgressors your ways,
and sinners will return to you.
14 Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God,
O God of my salvation,
and my tongue will sing aloud of your righteousness.
15 O Lord, open my lips,
and my mouth will declare your praise.
16 For you will not delight in sacrifice, or I would give it;
you will not be pleased with a burnt offering.
17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit;
a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.

18 Do good to Zion in your good pleasure;
build up the walls of Jerusalem;
19 then will you delight in right sacrifices,
in burnt offerings and whole burnt offerings;
then bulls will be offered on your altar.

There are many beautiful things in this Psalm. On David’s part, his humility, broken spirit, and contrite heart. It’s a place where we have all been. It’s so relatable.

But the most beautiful is all that God is doing. The list is long:

He shows mercy and blots out transgressions. He washes us thoroughly and cleanses us from our sin. He teaches us wisdom and purges us with hyssop. He washes us some more. He hides His face from our sin and He blots out some more. And then, He creates in us clean hearts! He renews a right spirit within us! He refuses to cast us away from His presence and He will not take His Holy Spirit from us! He restores to us the joy of our salvation! He delivers us and opens our lips!

Receive God’s good gifts!

Deliver me from bloodguiltiness.

Psalm 51: 13 – 19

13 Then I will teach transgressors your ways,
and sinners will return to you.
14 Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God,
O God of my salvation,
and my tongue will sing aloud of your righteousness.
15 O Lord, open my lips,
and my mouth will declare your praise.
16 For you will not delight in sacrifice, or I would give it;
you will not be pleased with a burnt offering.
17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit;
a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.

18 Do good to Zion in your good pleasure;
build up the walls of Jerusalem;
19 then will you delight in right sacrifices,
in burnt offerings and whole burnt offerings;
then bulls will be offered on your altar.

Deliver me from bloodguiltiness.

Sin is sin. The earthly consequences often differ, but in the end, we are all guilty.

I believe satan loves to poke and needle the guilty. He wants us to never forget our sins. And his goal seems to be to interrupt or delay the recognition of our sin as sin and distract us from going to our Deliverer.

Have you ever been stuck in the cycle of sin-guilt-shame-hiding-isolation- discouragement-frustration-anger-distance-sin? It might look a little different in your life, but this type of cycle does not produce healing. Somewhere in the cycle needs to be the confession-forgiveness-deliverance!

Don’t let yourself be fooled by satan and his tactics. The world certainly gives us every reason to justify our behavior. We have been through a lot recently and it looks like things aren’t easing up just yet. But God — He longs to restore and renew us. Daily confession brings daily deliverance. What a beautiful way to start a new day!

Take not your Holy Spirit from me

Psalm 51: 7-12

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 broken rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins,
    and blot out all my iniquities.
10 Create in me a clean heart, O God,
    and renew a right spirit within me.
11 Cast me not away from your presence,
    and take not your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
    and uphold me with a willing spirit.

Take not your Holy Spirit from me.

Another gut wrenching plea. The weight of our sin in unbearable except for Jesus’ work.

But, if I am honest, sometimes the weight of my sin doesn’t impact me to the core as much as someone else’s. How could that be? I think it is my sinful nature coming through along with the whispering lies of satan.

I am confident in God’s love, care, and provision for me. I am very confident. And yet I vacillate between the gravity of my sin and the work done for me. It’s difficult to hold both of those at the same time.

Do you struggle with this, too?

Restore to me the joy of your salvation.

Psalm 51: 7-12

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 broken rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins,
    and blot out all my iniquities.
10 Create in me a clean heart, O God,
    and renew a right spirit within me.
11 Cast me not away from your presence,
    and take not your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
    and uphold me with a willing spirit.

Restore to me the joy of your salvation.

It’s been a long few years. And things are getting a little more unsettled with what is happening in Europe. Whether or not we are experiencing the same challenges as our neighbors, it is disheartening to watch things around us.

Internal joy is not dependent on external circumstances. And, of course, the joy of salvation is such a different thing altogether. It’s above and beyond and yet I don’t think I consider it on a daily basis.

The joy of your salvation.

The word restore indicates that the joy has been there. Being separated from God should break us. And that brokenness makes us miserable. And that is evident to those around us.

Joy is contagious! And the joy of salvation? It’s certainly a cause for celebration. And once you know that particular joy, knowing that you have separated yourself from it can rock you to your core.

Lord, let me comprehend the weight of my sin but, in confession to You, bring it all. And allow You to wash it clean, renew my spirit, and restore my joy! Amen.

Renew a right spirit within me.

Psalm 51: 7-12

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 broken rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins,
    and blot out all my iniquities.
10 Create in me a clean heart, O God,
    and renew a right spirit within me.
11 Cast me not away from your presence,
    and take not your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
    and uphold me with a willing spirit.

Renew a right spirit within me.

I can count on God for many things, but this is vital for me. Never mind that the world rarely encourages a “right spirit” but I find I am fighting my own mind in this. God sets me straight and my mind wanders off immediately, filled with “wrong spirit” thoughts.

If only I …

If only he …

Why does she always …

There are countless situations that call for grace and mercy and I withhold them like I am having supply chain issues.

Forgiveness?

Well, I don’t know, have they groveled enough?

Somewhere, within me is a right spirit. I know because it has been renewed, time and time again. The sooner I notice a broken or “wrong spirit” and take it to my Heavenly Father, the sooner He can renew it.

Recognizing my issue is an important piece. My confession is another vital component. God’s work is more easily accomplished when I have some awareness of my sinfulness and I go to Him for renewal.

God can renew because He made us new creations in the first place. Daily confession. Daily renewal. There is no supply chain issue with our Creator!

Teach me wisdom.

Psalm 51:1-6

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 only, have I sinned
    and done what is evil in your sight,
so that you may be justified in your words
    and blameless in your judgment.
Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity,
    and in sin did my mother conceive me.
Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being,
    and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart.

Teach me wisdom.

I can guarantee that God has been keeping up His end of the bargain on the teaching end. But, you know how it goes, there is some responsibility on the learner. Being open to the teachings is incredibly important. It’s critical. Sometimes my own roadblocks and attitude prevent me from learning. Sometimes there are disappointments and life challenges that interrupt my ability to listen to and learn from God.

My prayer is that my heart is open to God’s wisdom and discernment. That God continues to teach me through His Word. And that I would release any improper assumptions about Him and that I am open to learning from Him.

Cleanse me from my sin!

Psalm 51:1-6

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 only, have I sinned
    and done what is evil in your sight,
so that you may be justified in your words
    and blameless in your judgment.
Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity,
    and in sin did my mother conceive me.
Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being,
    and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart.

Cleanse me from my sin!

Why is it that it is so much easier to see and address the sins of others and not my own? Maybe it is a combination of my own sinful nature and an effective distraction from satan. If I am so busy looking at everyone else’s sin, I have little time to examine my own. But, unexamined sin leads to a greater separation from the One who can cleanse us.

Look what we miss out on if we ignore or pass over our own sin! We miss the reconciliation and the relief of God’s grace and mercy. This cleansing business is repeated work. It’s a bit like dishes and laundry, it’s always there. But, our daily acknowledgement and awareness helps us not get so far stuck in the depths of sin. I don’t think the point is for me to be stuck in the “poor, miserable sinner” mode but to be celebrating the work of our Savior! Look at what He has done for us!

It’s cold and we are getting ready for another winter storm. There are things happening in the world that are out of my control. But, I know God loves me and He is providing for me every day. He restores my soul and cleanses me from my sin! I am so thankful!

The People

Today, let’s pray for the people involved in your day.

There are so many people and interactions you might have in a day — from emails to phone conversations to Zoom or in person meetings to service providers to family…..

When I started really thinking about this, I was almost overwhelmed. Each and every day people (and their dispositions and approach) are in our lives. They can impact us and we can impact them! Think of how much our perspectives and attitudes are influenced just because we spent time interacting with someone.

We can’t always control who is on our path for the day. But, as we consider our day, we know we will be in communication with others. It is good to think about where we are and how we influence communication.

What are we bringing into the interactions?

Have we given our own challenges and burdens to God so that we are free to hear and notice the needs of others?

Is it time for us to “come clean” and admit we are struggling so that those who care for us can intercede for us?

In the end, the person we spend the most time with is ourselves. So, that is one thing to be thinking about. The others we interact with all have their own things going on and sometimes that comes into play — even without them realizing it. There are times when our days are filled to the brim with interactions.

It is so easy to see why Jesus went off to a quiet place to pray. Let’s guard that time with God and lay out our day. We don’t have to present every detail. We just need to ask Him to cover the day and to help us see what He wants us to see throughout the day.

Then, because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, he said to them, “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.” Mark 6:31 NIV

Guard Your Hearts and Your Minds

And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

We certainly must do what we can to guard our hearts and our minds. And going to God in prayer in every situation looks like the first line of defense. There are times that seeking God has fallen off my “to do” list. I get overwhelmed with the tasks ahead of me and I “save time” by plowing ahead — ungirded, disconnected, and underprepared.

We are in the world and we can fall prey to worldly things so easily. As we present every situation to God, He uses that time to send us His peace and protection. That peace of God can flood our conversations, our schedule, our tasks … our day.

Let’s do a five day challenge this week. 5 days of intentional prayer time. If you are in, let me know and send me one of your top verses via email to vospower6@hotmail.com. For the next 4 days we will start each day with a PrayerPoint.

For today, take time to present your day to God. What is on the calendar? How do you feel about what is on the calendar? Think of the mundane tasks as well as the overwhelming ones. Walk through your commitments, but don’t forget to pray for those gaps. Is there some space for God’s agenda? Are we booking each day so solidly that there is no room to move and be flexible?

I’ll see you tomorrow!

Received from God

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.  2 Corinthians 1:3-4 NIV

Anything good you have received from me is a gift from God through me. I am an imperfect person, fraught with issues, but sometimes, there is this moment when something passes from God to you and God allowed me to be the message bringer.

Since the beginning, God has used a lot of ways to communicate with us. This list is not exhaustive. It is only meant to jog your memory. God can use all things — even regular people — to share His message:

  • Jesus
  • The Holy Spirit
  • His Holy Word
  • donkeys
  • dreams
  • servants
  • kings
  • whispers
  • a pillar of cloud
  • a pillar of fire
  • prophets
  • a burning bush

God is in the business of sharing His message from our messes so sharing what you have received from God is so important! Remember, as the messenger, we are not the focus. God’s life-saving message is!