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Saturday, March 10, 2007

Psalm 103:8-12
The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love. He will not always accuse, nor will he harbor his anger forever; he does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities.

For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.

David wrote this psalm, and he knew from personal experience the joy of forgiven sin. His adultery with Bathsheba and murder of her husband was exposed by his friend Nathan. He was ashamed and uncovered. He knew he too deserved to die. And he expected God to withdraw his presence and blessing.

When that didn't happen, he wrote this psalm. God's forgiveness, so far beyond anything David could do for himself, allowed him to turn back to God. He was accountable, uncovered and convicted ... and then he was forgiven, comforted and given new strength.

God gets involved with us. The creator of all things takes my actions seriously and holds them up to the light. I am accountable for what I do and say. These things matter to him. I matter to him. And when I betray myself or those around me, when the consequences of that betrayal are deep and lasting, God hurts too. God weeps with those who weep.

But as David discovered, that is not the end of things. In the trickle of time God's forgiveness and forgetfulness mark my life. I know I am loved. He holds nothing against me. His touch becomes more precious than anything. I love God more than health, more than wealth, more than life itself. David's psalm begins, "Praise the Lord, O my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name."

Praise the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, praise his holy name.

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