Nancy's Note: written 5/7/10
I am struggling. Struggling with sin, a particular sin. Today I verbalized it quite accidentially, I must admit. You see, I was explaining (and almost bragging) about how I gave up gambling, of any kind, years ago. No slot machines, no mega lotto, no roulette - well, you get the picture. But then I had to kind of take inventory of how I really didn't give up much. You see I am not at all addicted to gambling. I don't miss it. I hate Las Vegas. And so...what sin have I turned away from? In my life it wasn't a sin. I did not spend my grocery money at the casino. OK, so what is the real sin I let slip from my lips and heard for the real first time? It is the $3.00 on sale t-shirt for Sarah that I just have to get. Or the pair of jeans I must purchase for Jimmy to wear for our family picture. A special mop for my floors. OK, the list can and does go on and on and on. So there it is my confession. But, bottom line is...I spend too easily on too many things I shouldn't. This is an easy sin to hide when income is flowing freely. But, when the purse strings are tight it can be down right dangerous.
O LORD, Deliver My Life
(A Psalm of David)
O LORD, rebuke me not in your anger, nor discipline me in your wrath. Be gracious to me, O LORD, for I am languishing; heal me O LORD, for my bones are troubled. My soul also is greatly troubled. But you, O LORD—how long?
Turn, O LORD, deliver my life; save me for the sake of your steadfast love. For in death there is no remembrance of you; in Sheol who will give you praise?
I am weary with my moaning; every night I flood my bed with tears; I drench my couch with my weeping. My eye wastes away because of grief; it grows weak because of all my foes.
Depart from me, all you workers of evil, for the LORD has heard the sound of my weeping. The LORD has heard my plea; the LORD accepts my prayer. All my enemies shall be ashamed and greatly troubled; they shall turn back and be put to shame in a moment. Psalm 6, ESV
I started a reading plan to read the Book of Psalms in 60 days. I found this through my friend Erin’s blog. So, I started May 1st and I just finished reading chapter 6. Well, I am supposed to be finishing chapter 15 today, but that is another story. This chapter spoke volumes to me tonight.
I love David. A scrawny shepherd boy who fell ‘under the radar’ in this world and yet was destined by God to rule over the Israelite kingdom. A man who sinned, and sinned well he did. And yet, in God’s own words he was exalted as “A man after God’s own heart”. How moving it is for me to know that I too am destined by God and can be called “a woman after God’s own heart”. Not by my doing but by David’s line, God’s own Son. We can all be called “a woman after God’s own heart” by the work and person of Jesus Christ.
David, in this Psalm is anguishing over his sin. In it is a prayer for mercy. David also speaks of life and death and how with God there is life and without Him there is death. And that David feels as though God has His attention elsewhere and David asks god to deliver him from death and the devil. David is in mourning because of his sin but he also speaks of how the Lord has heard his cries. I too pray for mercy, undeserved. I call to the Lord through my tears. I am assured that God will hear me as He heard David. And I know that through Christ I will have life eternal. We all can be secure in these things.
David also calls out asking for God to relieve him of his suffering (physical, mental and emotional) here and now in this world. This gives me great comfort to know that in my sin I too can ask for strength, healing, compassion, relief, help, comfort, peace HERE and NOW. I know where my eternal future lies but sometimes I really want these things, like David, in the here and now. I must acknowledge that it is all in God’s timing and all God’s will how and when and if it is to be. Because scripture clearly reveals that the wages of sin is death. But, God be praised! Through faith in Christ’s redemption, our sins have been forgiven.
Lord, hear my plea, and accept my prayer through the merits of Jesus, who prays for me. Amen.
Ephesians 2:8-10 ESV
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is a gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:8-10 (ESV)