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!

Philippians 4:6-7

I have always loved this verse!

During May, I plan to explore different sections of these two verses and I encourage you to mull them over and make a deeper connection with them too! For now, commit it to memory if it isn’t already tucked away. If you have been reading PrayerPoints for any length of time, you know that music is very important to me. So, of course, I have to point out a song for this Psalm.

Stinkin’ Thinkin’

Have you ever needed an attitude adjustment? Do you have a crazy situation from your past that was a unfair and created a huge life change?

  • Job loss
  • Natural disaster
  • Unexpected pregnancy
  • Cross country move
  • Friendship loss
  • Illness
  • __________________________ (go ahead, fill in that blank!)

I know not everything has a happy ending. This life on Earth is filled with struggles and disappointments. And yet, God can bring about good from difficulties. It doesn’t erase the pain from the situations. Some people are living through some extremely difficult circumstances. Ones that I cannot even imagine walking through. I don’t have any easy or pat answers. But I know time can help. Time and distance can give us a perspective that we cannot possibly have in the moment.

God can take the manure dumps of life and use them to fertilize some other things that need to grow. That tilling and hoeing of our lives can produce new and different fruit. How many ministries have come out of despair? How many incredible hymns and books have been written that show God’s transformative work?

You have surely had an ugly thing or two happen to you. If it happened 5-10 years ago and you realized a truth of God at a deeper level, consider sharing that with someone.

May you see God at work in your past as well as in your today!

Hello Friend — Day One

Hello Friend!

I know you are in a challenging spot. Sometimes it is hard to reconcile what you believe and what you are experiencing and what you hope for. I know your mind is working overtime and your heart feels squeezed. I’m sorry you are in the middle of it all! I will pray for your discernment as you sort through your circumstances. Here are some things that have helped me!

Step Back: When I try to look at the big picture of whatever I am facing it gives me a new perspective. If my heart is unsettled with something, I try to take a break from my efforts. I might be trying too hard. I might be doing the wrong thing. If I don’t have God’s peace in what I am working on I have to consider that I might be in the wrong place. Yes, there are always hard things in life but I am not sure that God asks us to be in a place that consistently compromises our physical, mental, and spiritual health. If I have a difficult time backing up, sometimes talking with a friend can help me gain a valuable perspective.

Step Aside: Sometimes I actually get in God’s way! Of course, He can work around me but if I am impatient and spring into action I might interrupt something He is working on. Just because I can solve a problem doesn’t mean I am the one who needs to. There are times that God is growing a strength in others for the tasks ahead of them. When I dive in and “help” I might actually be hindering an important growth step for them.

Step In: When I am in front of a situation that calls my attention I need to discern if I should go forward. Just because God allows an opportunity to grace my path it doesn’t mean it is one I need to take. It is important to seek His guidance as I make a move to go “into” whatever phase or circumstance He has allowed into my life. Just because it is difficult doesn’t mean I shouldn’t do it and just because it is easy doesn’t mean I should!

Step Out: I often wonder what God is leading me to next. What is the next thing I need to do? It might be outside of my comfort zone — am I ready for that? What will He teach me in this next experience? Am I ready to learn and grow? Sometimes it requires I “step out” in faith that He will meet my needs.

Step Up: When I offer up my situation to God it reminds me that I am not the one in control. Sometimes I simply get sucked down into the muck — and that is when finding the energy and the strength to give it to God can get difficult. Stepping up to God’s throne should always be my first move!

I am so thankful you are in my life!