My little boy Roman threw a rock at his friend Nadia’s head, and he “wasn’t really sorry.” My wife Rachel reported this to me when I got home, and we sat down and had a talk with Roman about it. As Rachel retold the story, his “angry” eyebrows formed into that pensive “v” shape and his lips pursed into a defiant little three-year-old scowl. It was ugly.
We decided it was important to let Roman know what he looked like – that he was using his anger to hide something very serious. His brain started to churn, his whole face softened, and our little boy started to cry – not his typical whiny attention-getting cry. But his face transformed beautifully into this humble and contrite sorrow. Tears trickled down his face, and he let himself experience the grief of his own sin. He finally saw his sin for what it really was.
“To see who the Lord is brings us to confession. When Isaiah caught sight of the glory of God he cried, ‘Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!’ (Isa. 6:5). The pervasive sinfulness of human beings becomes evident when contrasted with the radiant holiness of God. Our fickleness becomes apparent once we see God’s faithfulness. To understand his grace is to understand our guilt…(in worship) we see the Lord of hosts ‘high and lifted up,’ ponder his infinite wisdom and knowledge, wonder at his unfathomable mercy and love.” – (Richard Foster from Spirit of the Disciplines)
This week we will sing:
Thy mercy is more than a match for my heart
Which wonders to feel its own hardness depart
Dissolved by Thy goodness I fall to the ground
And weep to the praise of the mercy I’ve found
I encourage you to make time sometime between now and Sunday morning service to have some extended confession. I use Psalm 51. I read the first three verses, take a long time to reflect and ask God to reveal my sinfulness, and continue with “For I know my transgressions and my sin is ever before me.” But then we reach the part in verse 8 when David writes, “May the bones that you have broken rejoice!” His mercy is so good and worth rejoicing about; and we can only experience it when we look at who God is, look at our sin, and realize how far we are from perfection. Our God has “steadfast love” and “abundant mercy.” Hallelujah!
Feel free to use http://restorationmusic.wordpress.com/ to help you prep for Sunday. I have been receiving a lot of good feedback from those who are engaging with this site. Take a look!