What do you do when you know you have sinned against God?
Run away? Hide? Lie?
We know there is a better way. Repentance.
Sorrow for our offenses. Going to God with humility, honesty. Total transparency. No lying, no hiding. Just truth.
There is a famous story about a famous man: Dawud. As a King, he could have anything he wanted and he wanted something that did not belong to him – another man’s wife. He let his lust take over and slept with this woman. He let the evil of his heart take over by hiding the sin and even killing the woman’s husband.
Thankfully, this is not the end of the story. God sent a prophet to the King to confront him about his great sin. And again – thankfully – King Dawud repented to God of his sins of adultery and murder. His prayer of repentance is found in the Zabur – Psalm 51.
Psalm 51 (excerpts)
Have mercy on me, O God,
according to your unfailing love;
according to your great compassion
blot out my transgressions.
Wash away all my iniquity
and cleanse me from my sin.
For I know my transgressions,
and my sin is always before me.
Against you, you only, have I sinned
and done what is evil in your sight;
so you are right in your verdict
and justified when you judge.
Cleanse me. . .and I will be clean;
wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
Let me hear joy and gladness;
let the bones you have crushed rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins
and blot out all my iniquity.
Create in me a pure heart, O God,
and renew a steadfast spirit within me.
Do not cast me from your presence
or take your Holy Spirit from me.
Restore to me the joy of your salvation
and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.
Then I will teach transgressors your ways,
so that sinners will turn back to you.
Deliver me from the guilt of bloodshed, O God,
you who are God my Savior,
and my tongue will sing of your righteousness.
Open my lips, Lord,
and my mouth will declare your praise.
You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it;
you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings.
My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit;
a broken and contrite heart
you, God, will not despise.
This is real repentance.
Below is a more modern song – prayer – of real repentance to God:
“Lord, I’m ready now. Nothing left to hide. No reasons left to lie. I ran away from You. And did what I wanted to. You called my name. I turned away. But now I am listening. Give me another chance. Can you please forgive me? Oh Lord, I’m ready now.”
If you are running from God, are you ready now to turn back? Time is running out. He is calling your name. Are you listening?
Are you ready now – to repent?