God saves me from the depths of despair every single time - 18 September 2018

Ewald Schmidt

A song of ascents. Out of the depths I cry to you, Lord; Lord, hear my voice. Let your ears be attentive to my cry for mercy. If you, Lord, kept a record of sins, Lord, who could stand? But with you there is forgiveness, so that we can, with reverence, serve you. Psalm 130:1-4 (NIV)

We are on a journey this month, thinking about our lives in terms of a pilgrimage. We are reading the songs of ascent, those songs sung when pilgrims climbed up towards Mount Zion, to worship the Lord at the temple. In the pilgrimage of my life I find the time to reflect upon my journey. When we look back, every life bears witness to times spent in the desert. We have all lived through times of tribulation, in which our faith was tested. These times are not always the result of our wrong choices, it can be a fact of life, just living in a broken world.

But today’s song tells of other dark times in our lives. When we look back on our lives, there are also events we would rather forget. These depths, according to this psalm, were the result of sin. There were times when we disobeyed God, when we made the wrong choices in life. None of us is spared this embarrassment, because nobody is without sin. We have all been hurt through sin in our lives.

When a believer realises that he is on the wrong path, it does not help to pretend everything is in order. The damage just keeps getting worse, and we get more entangled in the snares of sin. When you have fallen on the path of life, cry out to the Lord. Ask him for his mercy, and his forgiveness. This song says: God is listening out for the cries of his children. It is not God’s will to let us lie in the mud of the path of life. He has dealt with the price of our sin on Calvary, God does not want to punish his children any more. His Father heart is looking out for his children in need. It is his desire to live in a relationship with us, and that is why he is quick to forgive when we cry out to him.

If sin was not forgiven, we would try in vain to continue walking the path of life with God. Verse 4 stresses the point that God wants to forgive. He finds joy in healing his children, giving us a fresh measure of grace every single time we need it. He is known for his unfailing love. He finds pleasure in redeeming his children from all sin.

Are there some dark depths in your past that you still feel guilty or ashamed about? This song invites you to cry out to the Lord. You can be sure of God’s mercy, it is as certain as the sun rising tomorrow morning, states verse 6. God’s mercy and love for you is much larger than anything you could have done wrong in life.

Prayer: Father, you know that I am small and weak compared to you. I tend to forget it, and with pride follow my own insight, sometimes disobeying you. I have also fallen into the depths of sin along my path of life. Thank you that you do not wish me to remain in the depths. You hear my voice, crying out for your help. Thank you for your mercy, every time I need it. You are a Father who really cares for me! Amen

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