This summer I have been engaged in a beautiful study of the book of Psalms. These anthem verses written out of the depths of searching souls have been like packets of light and hope calculated for my personal state. There have been many days this summer I have found myself saying, “Oh my goodness, that might be my new favorite scripture!” While I would love to share every one of these enlightening rays of truth, I want to write about one that inspired in me a change for good.
The writer of this Psalm is David. The situation is David’s pleading for forgiveness after he committed a sin with Bath-sheba. You can hear in these first few verses the trembling state of a sinner. You can hear right out of the gate the sorrow and begging of a sin-stained soul.
O God…Have mercy upon me…blot out my transgressions.
Wash me thoroughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.
For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me.
Against thee, thee only, have I sinned…
Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me…
Purge me with … and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
Now perhaps we might think that our sin is not as heavy as one who has committed adultery and perhaps it is not. However, when we are honest with ourselves and with God deep down in our heart of hearts there is a little pleading voice saying, “O God, have mercy upon me, cleanse me, wash me, purge me, I was “shapen” or born with a sinful nature prone to fulfill iniquitous desires, I acknowledge that sin is always in me…please help me.”
Given this auspicious reality we must pray always for the enabling power of the Lord to be unlocked in our lives. Hence, the stanza! This verse, like a wise old friend, offers intelligence that shows us how to utilize such sincere appeal to the divine in a more fruitful way.
Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.
Perhaps, this ought to be the prayer of our lives. God is the master creator and if we ask and then let him he has the capacity to create in us a clean heart. He can renew a right spirit in inside of us that only seeks good continually. He can change those things about us that we secretly despise and want to change anew.