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June 2, 2016

When I've Failed

“My guilt overwhelms me— it is a burden too heavy to bear.” Psalm 38:4 (NLT)

Have you ever felt overwhelmed by the guilt of your own sin and failure?  This Psalm, along with several others that David wrote, discloses his personal confessions – the confessions of a King who failed.  To make matters worse, he attempted to conceal his sin, hoping he could repress the guilt.  It didn’t. In fact, it only got worse. In Psalm 32, David said,

“When I refused to confess my sin, my body wasted away, and I groaned all day long. Day and night Your hand of discipline was heavy on me.  My strength evaporated like water in the summer heat.”  (Vs. 3-4)

Have you ever felt like that?  Maybe, like David, you are haunted by a past failure in your life that drains you of your energy and creativity.  What do you do?  Take a moment out of your day and read these penitential psalms together – Psalm 6; 32; 38; 51; 102, 130 and 143.  Allow the Holy Spirit to do a deep work of cleansing in your heart and conscience as you read them and pray through them.  David’s reflection and confession were heartfelt.  God never intended for the pressure of guilt to condemn David but to correct him and restore the relationship he once enjoyed with God.  When it became unbearable, David broke.  That brokenness was the beginning of his healing and restoration!  It will be the beginning of healing in your life as well.  If you’re feeling broken, you’re in a good place.  In Psalm 51, David said,

“The sacrifice You (God) desire is a broken spirit.  You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God.” (Vs. 17)

David’s own brokenness led him to confess the sin he was trying to cover up.  In Psalm 32:5, he wrote,

“Finally, I confessed all my sins to You and stopped trying to hide my guilt.  I said to myself, ‘I will confess my rebellion to the LORD.’ And You FORGAVE ME!  ALL MY GUILT IS GONE.”

With the sin forgiven, the guilt was gone!  Joy was restored!  No wonder he writes,

“Oh, what joy for those whose disobedience is forgiven, whose sin is put out of sight!  Yes, what joy for those whose record the LORD has cleared of guilt, whose lives are lived in complete honesty!” Psalm 32:1-2 (NLT)

You may be thinking That may have worked for David, but you don’t know what I’ve done.  Our own sins can be overwhelming to us and seem unforgivable, even to God.  The burden is too heavy to bear.  That’s why God sent His Son.  Our sins deserved death, and Jesus Christ died in our place to pay the penalty for the sins of the whole world!  In Psalm 130:1 and 3, the Psalmist cried,

“From the depths of despair, O LORD I call for your help … LORD, if you kept a record of our sins, who, O LORD could ever survive?”

Then, he tells us the good news in verses 7 and 8,

“O Israel, hope in the LORD; for with the LORD there is unfailing love.  He Himself will redeem Israel from EVERY KIND OF SIN.” 

Did you get that?  Your sin is not the exception.  God’s grace is greater than all our sin!  That’s the good news of the Gospel!  Turn from your sin to God.  Come clean and confess it all to Him and experience the joy of sins forgiven and a fresh start!