1Have mercy on me, O God,
according to your steadfast love;
according to your abundant mercy
blot out my transgressions.
2Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
and cleanse me from my sin.
3For I know my transgressions,
and my sin is ever before me.
4Against you, you alone, have I sinned,
and done what is evil in your sight,
so that you are justified in your sentence
and blameless when you pass judgment.
5Indeed, I was born guilty,
a sinner when my mother conceived me.
6You desire truth in the inward being;
therefore teach me wisdom in my secret heart.
7Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
8Let me hear joy and gladness;
let the bones that you have crushed rejoice.
9Hide your face from my sins,
and blot out all my iniquities.
10Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and put a new and right spirit within me.
11Do not cast me away from your presence,
and do not take your holy spirit from me.
12Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
and sustain in me a willing spirit.
As a child, spring cleaning was the necessary activity that I disliked the most. It was a time to evaluate, take inventory, and set the entire house in order for a new season. The task I disliked the most was the process of cleaning windows to make them spotless and shiny.
During this season of Lent, as we reflect and examine ourselves, remember the words of Jesus, “I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will, but the will of him who sent me” (John 6:38). Because of God’s grace and Jesus’s steadfast commitment to fulfill the will of God—his determination, sacrifice, suffering, and death on the cross and glorious resurrection—believers who put their faith and total trust in Christ enjoy forgiveness, salvation, and fellowship with God. We are called to worship God and live in humble and faithful submission to the will of God and utilize our gifts and talents in service to God and others.
What areas of our lives do we need to examine, surrender, and submit to God? How have we missed the mark, distorted God’s truth, and deliberately disobeyed the will of God? What sins do we need to confess to God and others?
The psalmist models for us how we are to deal with sins in our lives. When we confess our sins to God and others, God is able to forgive our sins and create in us clean hearts, steady spirits, and minds and wills open to and fixed on God. As we seek Christ and strive to live in God’s presence, we can overcome the power of sin and live to the glory of God.
Prayer: Gracious God, I thank you for the gift of Jesus and the sanctifying presence of the Holy Spirit. Forgive me of my sins and help me to be steadfast in my walk with you. Amen.
Derrick Jones is the supervisor of RCA mission in Africa and the interim co-director of RCA Global Mission.