Before Psalm 51 are a few rough Psalms – Psalms that promise judgement for the wicked in graphic, harsh terms. They also praise the righteous and promise redemption, but all too often, I identify with the sinner, especially when I am already feeling low.
That’s why whenever I see the term “steadfast love” (in the ESV; “lovingkindness” in NAS & KJ), I circle it. I need to see it, to emphasize it, to have it catch my eye, or I only see how I fall short.
“Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love, according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions.” (v1)
You know that Kool Aid you got on the couch as a kid, and how as hard as you tried, you could not blot it out? Like Adam and Eve, you might have tried to hide it, moving the pillow strategically to cover it?
God, with his in infinite power and, more importantly, with his steadfast love, has the ability to reach down and blot out the stain, as if it was never…never…never there.
But it’s hard for us to forget. Verse 3 reads, “For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me.” We know our history.
“Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.
Cast me not away from your presence and take not your Holy Spirit from me.
Restore to me the joy of your salvation and uphold me with a willing spirit.(10-12)
“The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.” (17)
When we are broken, we can bring the pieces to God. He, the creator, can make something new, a right and willing spirit. He can restore us and give us joy and salvation.
But it’s up to us to bring him the pieces…
And how does this relate to us, personally and as a nation, during this time of realization? (comment below)