In this year of refocusing, the scripture that won’t leave my head begins with a request that would be impossible for anyone but God. Psalm 51:10. “Create in me a clean heart, O God.” To be truthful, this verse rattles around in my head in a musical fashion, because it was part of the weekly liturgy in the Lutheran church of my childhood. When I sang these words, I thought they probably applied to someone else, someone with a lot of issues. With a very filthy heart.
But, if I am focusing on changes that need to be made in my life, I will first have to recognize what needs to be changed. I have never enjoyed having my failings pointed out. I am very good at rationalizing, at justifying. You see, it isn’t my fault. I always mean well. It’s me, not someone else. I am really a good person.
From past experience, though, I know that when there is a problem in my life, coming clean hurts, but it feels so good when it is over. The best thing is, I know that once the sin or shortcoming is recognized and confessed, my heavenly Father forgives me. There will still be earthly consequences. And God expects me to work hard at correcting the problem. His advice to the woman at the well in John 8:11? “Go and Sin no more.”
So, I am in a period of evaluation. What things need to be purged from my life so that I can make room for this new, clean heart? My list will include being more honest about my faults, my bad habits, my sins. This will allow the rest of verse 10 to happen, as he will “Renew a right spirit within me.”
What better way to refocus. With a clean heart and a right spirit. Amen, and amen.