A Prayer

Psalm 19:12-14 (NCV) “People cannot see their own mistakes. Forgive me for my secret sins. Keep me from the sins of pride; don’t let them rule me. Then I can be pure and innocent of the greatest of sins.

I hope my words and thoughts please you. Lord, you are my Rock, the one who saves me.”

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17 thoughts on “A Prayer

  1. This is such a powerful prayer when you I about each part of it. When it is dark and you can’t see anything, you can trip, fall or walk into something dangerous. And on secret sins Numbers 32:23 says …”and be sure your sin will find you out.” And pride is one of the seven deadly sins (Prov 6:16-19)) that the Lord hates and what caused the angel Lucifer to fall. And letting sin rule means we are not allowing God to rule…further pride. “For this cause do not let sin be ruling in your body which is under the power of death, so that you give way to its desires (Rom 6:12).”
    But how wonderful when not only our words are pleasing but our thoughts. If my mind is a beautiful garden filled with all the things mentioned in Phil. 4:8 then the Holy Spirit will enjoy walking there and feel at home. “Finally, brothers and sisters, keep your thoughts on whatever is right or deserves praise: things that are true, honorable, fair, pure, acceptable, or commendable.”
    Sara, thank you for this powerful prayer.

  2. Debi, sure like your garden. I think I better do a little weeding and let the good healthy things grow.

    Also love Psalm 19 from NCV. Thanks

  3. I’d like to add the footnotes from my Bible on verse 12 and 13, in Psalm 19, here: ” Many Christians are plagued by guilt. They worry that they may have committed a sin unknowingly, done something good with selfish intentions, failed to put their whole heart into a task, or neglected what they should have done. Guilt can play an important role in bringing us to Christ and in keeping us behaving properly, but it should not cripple us or make us fearful. God fully and completely forgives us- even for those sins we do unknowingly.”

    Thank you, Jesus, for forgiving us, even when we commit sins, unknowingly. Lord, help us all, make Psalm 19: 14 be part of our daily prayers.

  4. Needles, what does your footnotes say for Vs. 14…”Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, I pray.”

  5. Bonhoffer said; guilt is an idol. Perhaps we need to learn to do the things for which we honor the older generations. They are said to be those that knew the art of praying and taking things to God in prayer. We grow nostalgic over their acts when we need to replicate them in our life.

  6. In Max Lucado’s Devotional Bible on the topic “Guilt” he says the following:
    “Whether private or public, shame is always painful. And unless dealt with it, it is permanent. (Idol as Gary says.) Unless you get help – the dawn will never come.
    Take him with you to your canyon of shame. Invite Christ to journey with you. Let him stand beside you as you retell the events of the darkest nights of your soul. And then listen. Listen carefully. He’s speaking. ‘I don’t judge you guilty.’ And watch. Watch carefully. He’s writing. He’s leaving a message. Not in the sand, but on a cross. Not with his hand, but with His blood. His message has two words: Not guilty.”

  7. When I pause and think on Bonhoffer’s ‘guilt is an idol.’ It gives me a picture of God’s Word as a two- edged sword. (Another sword) Guilt on one side gives us a feeling and seemly we love feelings. Then at appropriate time we take that sword (guilt) and wield a blow to the ones we say we love by making them feel guilty in order to induce them to do something we want. We just love to have control and we believe from our feeling that it is God giving us the ability to make others feel guilt. Make others guilty with us by association. And, that is all we get, another poor guilty soul.

    I see at times we just don’t want to give up our sword of guilt. Galatians 5:1-5
    Christ Gives Freedom. Christ has set us free! This means we are really free. Paul says, hold on to your freedom and don’t ever become slaves of the Law again. (guilty)

    Paul, promise you that Christ won’t do you any good if you stay guilty and use guilt to benefit yourself and others by destructive behavior.

  8. I must say guilt and all its association brings me back to what Gary has said, the art of praying we have been taught from the masters in God’s Word. Just like this simple prayer of the Psalmist that we have prayed here. The Message writer words the Psalmist and my prayer like this, “There’s more: God’s Word warns us of danger and directs us to hidden treasure. Otherwise how will we find our way? Or know when we play the fool?
    Clean the slate, God, so we can start the day fresh!
    Keep me from stupid sins,
    from thinking I can take over your work;
    Then I can start this day sun-washed,
    scrubbed clean of the grime of sin.
    These are the words in my mouth;
    these are what I chew on and pray.
    Accept them when I place them
    on the morning altar,
    O God, my Altar-Rock,
    God, Priest-of-My-Altar.

  9. Rena, from your excerpts from Max Lucado on guilt and shame. I just think their are many that will never give it up as it is their feather pillow to lay their head. They love snoozing on a soft pillow and resting in shame and guilt. Get up in the morning and springing it on anyone that walks by them. They say all are guilty and none are redeemed. “Message not in the sand but on the cross” as Max said, cross has to replace one’s negative thinking, don’t you think?

  10. There is a penalty for those who fail to avail themselves of the grace of GOD. June Evans says and Sara & Gary have taught, too, that by grace are we saved….that is Saving Grace… but it takes availing ourselves of God’s grace to live in peace, fellowship and able to resist sin as much as is possible….by the Grace of God within us …that He has provided through the Sacrifice of the cross and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. If we FAIL TO AVAIL, then we cannot overcome guilt and the concommitant depression. If we do not strive for peace among one another and pursue holiness….then Hebrews 12:14-15 says, “without which no one will EVER see GOD. Hebrews 16 says , ‘see that no on become guilty of any perversity’ If we live by grace we will overcome the temptations and the lusts of life and the flesh and then we will not have opportunity to wear guilt as a garment.

  11. Yes you are absolutely right Sara the cross must negate our negative thinking or we become grumpy people who people run from not to. Our guilty rags are not desired by anyone. Need to put on the garment of praise and go about each day.

  12. Sara,
    Here are the footnotes from my Bible on Psalm 19: 14 – “”Would you change the way you live if you knew that every word and thought would be examined by God first? David asks that God approve his words and reflections as though they were offerings brought to the altar. As you begin each day, determine that God’s love will guide what you say and how you think.”

  13. Thank you Sara for your insights on guilt…truly sobering. What a horrid besetting sin. It’s like having a dirty blackboard in one’s mind with accusations written all over it, and you don’t want to wipe it clean but want others to have to look at it and suffer. The psalmist’s prayer you wrote is God’s mighty eraser that He wants us all to use.
    And you can’t hide your intimidating weapon of guilt either. What Needles wrote reminds me that we are God’s house. We can’t stuff words and thoughts in a closet or sweep them under the rug and think God won’t see. He cleans and inspects using the white glove examination test.
    Luke 12:2:’There is nothing covered up that will not be exposed and nothing secret that will not be made known’.
    Proverbs 15:3: ‘The eyes of the LORD are in every place, Watching the evil and the good.’

  14. Needles, I love those footnotes on Psalm 19: 14. (see above) We are hearing how stressed people are with the financial crisis we are facing, Job layoffs, depression, two wars and the bad news goes on without ceasing. Yes, we struggle with hope, prayer, love and joy. Our words and heart thoughts go in the direction many times of deeper depression and worry, anxiety and stress. But, it is times such as these that we remember, and say and do “Yet will I praise Him.”

    Debi you are right, you can’t hide guilt for it gives body language louder than words many times.

  15. YES! If we avail ourselves of the Grace of God which enables us to acknowledge our sins, He affords us grace for forgivenss and the grace to walk in that forgiveness without guilt and condemnation, because we know we are forgiven only by the grace of God. Condemnation is not conviciton. If we are convicted in our hearts of a trespass/sin we need not walk in condemnation. If we admit our guilt and ask for forgivenss, repenting, then the Blood of Jesus washes us clean and there is NO condemnation to those who walk in the Spirit and keep clear books with the Lord. Also those who walk about with a load of guilt are walking in unbelief because they are really implying that they do not believe that CHRIST has the power to forgive MY PARTICULAR SIN AS IT IS SO BAD and therefore they have built an altar to that sin which then declares that SIN IS MORE POWERFUL THAN GOD’S ABILITY TO FORGIVE IT.
    We must not fail to procure the Grace of God, that Fatherly favor of Love and ompassion and forgiveness. Why would we want anything else?

  16. Going along with what MG said I read in Romans 8:1:”There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who don’t walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit”. And in Romans 8:34 “Who is he who condemns? It is Christ who died, yes rather, who was raised from the dead, who is at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us.” These scriptures certainly address condemnation from God’s perspective and the wonderful provision He has made through Christ so we don’t walk in it. God does condemn…He condemns sin in flesh(vs 3).

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