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Lenten Devotions from Fourth Presbyterian Church

Thursday, November 14, 2019  

Today’s Scripture Reading | Psalm 32:1–7     

Happy are those whose transgression is forgiven,
   whose sin is covered.
Happy are those to whom the Lord imputes no iniquity,
   and in whose spirit there is no deceit.

While I kept silence, my body wasted away
   through my groaning all day long.
For day and night your hand was heavy upon me;
   my strength was dried up as by the heat of summer.

Then I acknowledged my sin to you,
   and I did not hide my iniquity;
I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,”
   and you forgave the guilt of my sin.

Therefore let all who are faithful
   offer prayer to you;
at a time of distress, the rush of mighty waters
   shall not reach them.
You are a hiding place for me;
   you preserve me from trouble;
you surround me with glad cries of deliverance. (NRSV)

In early August, my husband, daughter, and I welcomed an eight-week-old Goldendoodle puppy into our family. This is a new learning experience for me, as I’ve only had cats throughout my life. The pup shows so much joy and excitement whenever we get home from work and school (or when we come back into the room for that matter!) as many dogs do. She wants to spend every moment with us, even if I just yelled at her for chewing on a piece of furniture or for stealing something off of the kitchen counter or for using my arm as a teething toy. This dog shows us complete forgiveness, acceptance, and love at all times. At times, I struggle with showing forgiveness, acceptance, and love to others, dog included. I have a hard time forgetting things and have been known to hold on to a grudge for things that I should be able to shrug off.

In this psalm, David expresses the great joy found in both offering and receiving forgiveness. None of us are perfect and will make mistakes that hurt others. We will all be hurt at times from mistakes made by others. When we bring our mistakes to God, we can find comfort and joy in God’s forgiveness and unconditional love. God holds nothing against us, and we are blessed with a fresh start each and every day. For that, I am grateful, and I will do my best to show love and forgiveness to others, just like our sweet puppy.

Loving God, thank you for your forgiveness and for a chance to start over each day. Help me to show love and forgiveness to all, even when it may be tough to do so. Amen.

Written by Briana Belding-Peck, Family Ministry Coordinator

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