If you’ve never heard of the SheReadsTruth community, you should check it out. This site is full of devotions for women, written by women. They encourage community and discussion over God’s living word. They are doing a series for Lent encouraging women to share their own thoughts on scripture, what better way to learn than to teach right? I love the idea of hundreds of women sharing how God has spoken to them through His word, each woman’s perspective is different and gives a different glimpse into God’s character and how the Holy Spirit is speaking.
This week the scripture was Psalm 38. When I read this chapter I was overcome with longing. Go read it here.
David is so honest about his sin and longing for God. He begs for grace and simply for God’s presence to be near.
like a heavy burden, they are too heavy for me.
5 My wounds stink and fester
because of my foolishness,
6 I am utterly bowed down and prostrate;
all the day I go about mourning.
“All the day I go about mourning.” Oh if I was as broken by my sin as David. I am utterly unworthy of God’s grace and love, I am in total need of sanctification, but how often do I “[bow] down and prostrate” before God and repent of my “foolishness.” Not often enough.
If we don’t understand the depth of our sin and depravity we won’t understand the depth of God’s grace and mercy.
David understood his own failings, his own inability to do good. This Psalm is full of rich language, of David lamenting over his sin.
7 For my sides are filled with burning,
and there is no soundness in my flesh.
8 I am feeble and crushed;
I groan because of the tumult of my heart.
During this season of Lent we need to meditate on our own wickedness as we prepare our hearts for the death and resurrection of our Messiah. Light is all the more brighter when in contrast to complete darkness. The state of our hearts before knowing a redeeming God was one of utter hopelessness, complete and total darkness. The light of Christ’s resurrection and through it, our gift of a relationship with our Creator God is the single most important thing that ever happened. That we were brought from death to life, from darkness to light. This is mind blowing, life giving, a total miracle. But how often have we become immune to the weight and miracle of this gift?
My prayer is that I would be as David, completely aware of my own sinfulness. So much so that it would wreck me, that it would move me. Because when we have the hope of Christ, our own sinfulness should not cripple us, it should move us to repentance.
17 For I am ready to fall,
and my pain is ever before me.
18 I confess my iniquity;
I am sorry for my sin.
We know and confess, we repent. With repentance comes grace. grace.
David’s longing in his sin was for his God’s presence.
9 O Lord, all my longing is before you;
my sighing is not hidden from you.
15 But for you, O Lord, do I wait;
it is you, O Lord my God, who will answer.
He did not long for approval of others, for fame, for peace of mind, for the comfort of this world, to be surrounded by loved ones. He recognizes that God’s presence alone should be his hope. In verse 9 David says that all his longing is before God. Not some of his longing, not half but all.
Because he knew, he understood that there was nothing good in him. He knew that his only hope was in his God. Because he was ‘ready to fall (vs 17).’ He was overwhelmed with his sin and was ready to repent and receive God’s grace and love.
I pray we would all be ready and willing to fall. When we surrender and prostrate ourselves before a loving God, we position ourselves to receive. To receive grace, mercy, love, comfort, direction and hope. To truly understand the power and miracle of Jesus overcoming the grave, we need to first understand death. That our own sin leads to death, that without the hope of Jesus, we walk in darkness.
But Jesus is light. “The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it.” John 1:5