By Brooke Holt
“Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man against whom the Lord counts no iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no deceit.” Psalm 32:1-2
You are a winner! You are important; you are special; you are good. We all long to hear and believe these messages. Thus, the YMCA began giving trophies to every child not differentiating between the true winners and losers; parents spoke these life-giving words over their children; and teachers were taught to give children praise and credit even when it came at the expense of their education. Our society longs to think we are right and worthy and good.
Then comes the season of Lent when the church calls people to acknowledge their sin, to repent of that sin, and to return wholeheartedly to the Lord. It is a tough call and often quite painful. Who wants to remember their sin, consider the effects of it, and then to confess that sin? This process of repentance is not fun for the moment, but the joy of forgiveness far outweighs the temporary pain.
Psalm 32 leads God’s people through this process of repentance as the Psalmist reminds his readers that forgiveness is always available to those who will look to the Lord. Though his people constantly miss the mark, the Lord stands ready to receive them, to hear their cries for mercy, to forgive them, and to restore them.
While God stands ready to receive his people, the process of repentance, forgiveness, and restoration requires that they come openly – open to see the sin, acknowledging the sin, and turning from that sin. While painful, it is the way to receiving God’s grace and healing.
God’s way of restoration provides the way to winning over sin, to finding your significance, to knowing that you are fully loved, and making you whole and holy. May you choose the way of the Lord today.
This is the call of the season of Lent for you. Are you allowing the Lord to search you and know you? Are you open to conviction of sin, and then are you willing to repent of that sin and return to the Lord? If so, the psalmist calls you “blessed”. We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
Could you use some hope right now? Join Peter’s first audience—“elect exiles” undergoing persecution—and experience the apostle’s powerful call to follow Jesus in the midst of life’s challenges, knowing your Living Hope is not a distant one, but a daily, glorious, life-giving reality! This unique six-week small group Bible study, A Living Hope: A Study of 1 Peter, helps you uncover the priceless promises written specifically to the struggling and the hurting, with pastoral gentleness and bold confidence for the future. This study of 1 Peter will help you become utterly convinced that Jesus is the only sure, true, incorruptible, and permanent hope for you.
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