Have mercy on me, O God, because of your unfailing love.Â
Because of your great compassion, blot out the stain of my sins.
Wash me clean from my guilt.
Purify me from my sin.
For I recognize my rebellion; it haunts me day and night.
Against you, and you alone, have I sinned;
I have done what is evil in your sight.
You will be proved right in what you say,
and your judgment against me is just. Â Â Â Â Psalm 51:1-4 (NLT)
Lectionary texts: Jeremiah 31:31-34, Psalm 51:1-12, Hebrews 5:5-10, John 12:20-33
The lectionary texts this week are AWESOME! I say that because they are about repentance and restoration. Since Adam and Eve’s fall from grace, God has said that His standard is holy but His heart is love. They are not in conflict with each other. It means He has had a plan since the beginning that will bring me back into a â€œright relationshipâ€ with Him.
Psalm 51 is the text that comes to my mind when I hear the Accuser in my head try to convince me that I am dirt and cannot possibly find my way back to that â€œspecialâ€ relationship with God. Psalm 51 is a step by step, grace-filled walk back to God.
Step #1: vv 1-5 I am a sinner. No excuses. No justification but Jesus’ perfect sacrifice. I should be punished. Have mercy.
Step #2: vv 6-9 God sees me as I am. He knows me inside and out. Please clean me, LORD. Do not turn away from me.
Step #3: vv 10-12 Restore me, LORD, and bring me into Your presence again. Give me a spirit that is willing to be restored and forgiving of myself.
Step #4: vv 13 Then I am going to tell everyone what You have done!
Step #5: vv 14-17 Show me, LORD, how to praise You to others. Show me how to praise You with a heart that is broken and tender; easily repentant and open to Your way in my life.
Step $6: vv 18-19 And Your Kingdom will be here on earth as it is in heaven.
The steps are all about what the LORD will do and how perfectly He will do it â€“ and all I im-perfectly did was to admit my sin and need for restoration. His love is so great for me â€“ for you.
During His earthly life, He offered prayers and appeals with loud cries and tears to the One who was able to save Him from death, and He was heard because of His reverence. Though He was Godâ€™s Son, He learned obedience through what He suffered. After He was perfected, He became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey Him, and He was declared by God a high priest in the order of Melchizedek. Â Â Â Â Hebrews 5:7-10 (HCSB)
It has been God’s desire that His Kingdom would be filled with His people who would be priests, mediators, who would have Him and His Way inside their hearts. Jesus has shown us as our High Priest what obedience means. My life in God’s Kingdom is about showing others about repentance and restoration. What God has done for me, He will do for all who ask and are willing.
Draw near today with an open heart that desires repentance and God will restore you completely and perfectly.
Renew Me by Avalon (2004)Â