Psalm 51:1-7 (NIV)

Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions. 2 Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin. 3 For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me. 4 Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you are proved right when you speak and justified when you judge. 5 Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me. 6 Surely you desire truth in the inner parts; you teach me wisdom in the inmost place. 7 Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.

1 John 1:9 (NRSV)

If we confess our sins, he who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

DEVOTION – Gale Richards (Iowa)

Friends told me that my sudden illness was an allergic reaction, but I didn’t really believe them because I’d never had allergies.  Finally, with a high fever and barely able to move, I begged my wife to take me to the hospital.  I remember saying, “I guess I must have some sort of allergy.”

The hospital staff isolated the problem and took corrective measures that relieved my physical distress.  Later it struck me that until I admitted my problem, little could be done to save me from it.  I had to be open to the remedy for my condition.

Something similar is true for us as sinners.  Until we admit that we have sinned, we can never open our hearts to accept God’s forgiving grace that is the remedy for sin.  I head a minister say one time, “The hardest step in the act of redemption is the step where the sinner accepts the need for it.”  Only after we admit that we are sinners can we accept God’s grace offered as a remedy for our sinfulness.

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: The moment we turn from our sin, we will find God’s grace.

PRAYER: Dear Father, we have sinned, and we fear that you will reject us because of it.  Help us to accept your grace and draw close to you.  Amen.

PRAYER FOCUS: Those Who Feel Beyond God’s Grace