“Have mercy on me, O God, because of your unfailing love. Because of your great compassion, blot out the stain of my sins. Wash me clean from my guilt. Purify me from my sin. For I recognize my rebellion; it haunts me day and night. Against you, and you alone, have I sinned; I have done what is evil in your sight. Purify me from my sins,and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow. Oh, give me back my joy again; you have broken me—now let me rejoice. Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a loyal spirit within me. Do not banish me from your presence, and don’t take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and make me willing to obey you” (Psalm 51:1-4a, 7-8,10-12, NLT).
When David was confronted by the prophet, Nathan, about his sin with Bathsheba, he immediately sought forgiveness from God. These verses reveal the heart of a man easily convicted by the Holy Spirit. The thought of his sin separating Him from God was overwhelming. He was broken before the Lord.
That is what the Lord wishes for me–to be easily convicted when there is something wrong in my life. God disciplines the child that He loves. It is proof of His love for me (Hebrews 12:6). My response to His loving discipline is repentance, and to do whatever He instructs me to do as a result of it. If my heart is truly broken, my attitude will change. Whatever God might instruct me to do will not be done because I “have to”, but because I “yearn to”. I never want to lose the intimate heart fellowship of His presence.
My changed heart–my changed attitude is what restores the joy of my salvation. My heart is free from its sinful burden, and my mind discovers freedom from the thoughts that burden has brought. The Holy Spirit abides within my heart, and I long to obey His will. If I ever need discipline again, I know He disciplines me because He wishes for nothing to separate me from His love.
“Always create a clean heart in me, O Lord. Always create the deep need to constantly renew my love and obedient loyalty to you. Mold my life like a piece of clay, and change me into a vessel that brings glory to your name. It hurts to be molded, but in the molding I become your craftsmanship. I am no longer adrift without purpose or focus. You are the heartbeat of my life. I never want to let you slip away because I was too tied up in “self” to draw closer to your heart.