Many churches throughout the world use a Bible reading schedule called a "lectionary." It's just a fancy word meaning "selected readings." Posts like this reflect on the readings for an upcoming Sunday or other Church holiday, as found in the historic one-year lectionary.
Psalm 51 is a deeply inward-focused reflection. In a time of social isolation, such as many of us have dealt with recently (and maybe are still dealing with it), we end up looking inside ourselves. The image of a depressed person spending the day inside with the curtains drawn and the lights off, wishing someone would call and hoping nobody will call comes to mind. We are all able to engage in introspection, whether a health or an unhealthy version. As in verse five, we realize our sin and failure.
What do we do with that realization? How do we deal with it when we realize our poverty before God? Verse six brings us very good news. God delights in truth in the inward being. Wait, even when the truth is toxic? Yes, even then.
The fact is, God has never looked at the heart of any fallen person and seen a heart without sin and shame. You can look all the livelong day for the person with a pure heart. You won’t find him, anywhere. But God still delights in truth.
We will never learn the wisdom of God as long as we think too highly of ourselves and our ability to change. We will never, ever, grow in grace as long as we think we’re just fine. It’s God’s delight to make us learn the truth of our inward person. That’s the way he convicts us of sin and changes us. That’s how he turns us to him. That’s how he brings healing and truth.
So we look at ourselves. Yes, the lights deserve to be off, the curtains deserve to be closed, and we probably don’t want to answer the phone or the doorbell. But God brings to light our sin and his healing love. Turn on the lights, Lord.
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