Of course, we have been flooded with reminders about soap-and-water washing and sanitizing our hands to remove germs, but what about cleansing the heart? Wash often. Cleanse us, O God.
Psalm 51 is a plea of repentance that was composed by David as a confession to God after he sinned with Bathsheba (2 Samuel 11, 12). It is a prayer for restoration.
In Psalm 51:10, David said, “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.”
In other words, David was saying, “O God, create in me a pure heart and pure thoughts. I repent. I have fallen. There is a void inside. I don’t want to live a sinful life. I confess that I have sinned and rebelled against You, Lord. I don’t shift the blame with alibis. I did it. Forgive me. I’m tired of the wrong spirit. Restore me. Do a work inside me and renew a right spirit. Remove the germs and evil. Make me steadfast and faithful again. Have mercy, O God.”
Recording artist William Murphy sings: “Purify our hearts, Lord. Sanctify our hearts, Lord. Oh Lord, we need You. We’re desperate for You. Now let Your glory settle here.”
Are we represented by portraits of bitterness and resentment? These will poison our spirits and those around us. And even generations.
Here is the good news: Faith in the Blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin (1 John 1:7). Washed clean. Turn to God in genuine repentance.
Here is a story about a cleaning:
According to reports, the powerful and beautiful pipe organ in the Norte Dame Cathedral (France) needs cleaning after a fire that left the organ coated in toxic lead dust. Taken apart piece by piece, the organ requires cleaning that is expected to take several years. The keyboards and the pipes have to be removed, and it will take months to tune the organ.
Likewise, perhaps some “fiery” situations, including jealousy and unforgiveness, have caused a “smoky residue” and left us “out of tune” with the Almighty. With cleansing and sanctification, we are set apart for the Master’s use. Yes, Lord.
Good old-fashioned advice: Make your hands free to catch blessings. Don’t catch and hold onto grudges.
Prayer: O Lord, You reign in victory! We confess our sins. You are faithful and just to forgive and cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9). We dwell on Your Word and watch our influences. Purify our hearts, Lord. Don’t cast us away from Your presence. Don’t take away Your Holy Spirit. Restore unto us the joy of Your salvation (Psalm 51:11, 12). In the name of Jesus, Amen.
Della Marie Woods Newkirk is an educator and native of Lillington. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Let’s have clean hands and hearts.