And renew a steadfast spirit within me. Psalm 51.10
He had done nothing to offend me, I was just tired. I was grouchy. My nerves were frayed and my emotions were a little too close to the service. Those are all my excuses, but the truth is that I just blew up. He did not deserve the response he got from me. I yelled. I fumed. I fussed. And it didn't take long. I said my piece and it was all over. There was nothing more to say, so I turned and walked away. I am not sure what my friend's response was to my tirade. I did not care.
It wasn't until much later that I realized that I had blown it. I had over-reacted and missed an opportunity to find peace and reconciliation. I was a part of the problem. I had lost all sight of how to relate to people- this person, a friend, anyway.
That is why it is important that we regularly pray prayers like this one in Psalm 51. We need the renewing work of God to make us clean and pure. Every person needs a regular round of repentance. Here are some basic steps to get you on your way.
- Examine your heart, your life, your words and your actions.
- Identify the sins that you have committed.
- Confess those sins to God.
- Confess your sins to those persons you have sinned against,or offended.
- Repent, or turn away, from your sins.
- Promise to sin no more.
- Commit yourself to avoiding those sins in the future.
- Receive the grace of God.
Repentance is one of the hardest parts of the Christian life. Admitting your faults and sins is a true crisis experience. However, our prayers cannot be effective if we do not come to God in holiness and purity.
PRAYER: Forgive me, Lord, for I have sinned. I have not lived up to your expectations or my potential. Empower me. Encourage me. Make me bold so that I may live for you now and always. Amen.