The Blessings of Repentance

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Grateful for the gift of repentance, Lent invites me into an even deeper experience of repentance through my Lenten journey in selected psalms. The blessings of repentance outweigh the uncomfortable posture of allowing the Holy Spirit to search me and know me, determining any areas of unconfessed sin. (Psalm 139:23-24)

Owning those deeds, words, thoughts, and motives which displease God, with honest remorse, gifts us the blessings of repentance.

Embracing the invitation of Lent to a season of realignment and relinquishment, I choose intentional time for quiet contemplation considering any areas of displeasure to God.

the blessing of a heart after god

Similar to both the lessons of the wilderness in Psalm 13, and the courage of confession (need link 3/13) in Psalm 6, David plumbs the depth of the blessings of repentance in Psalm 32.

The man after God’s own heart bravely faces the unconfessed sin in his life, relinquishing his own way while realigning himself with God’s ways.

Psalm 32

Blessed is the one
    whose transgressions are forgiven,
    whose sins are covered.
Blessed is the one
    whose sin the Lord does not count against them
    and in whose spirit is no deceit.

When I kept silent,
    my bones wasted away
    through my groaning all day long.
For day and night
    your hand was heavy on me;
my strength was sapped
    as in the heat of summer.

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

Therefore let all the faithful pray to you
    while you may be found;
surely the rising of the mighty waters
    will not reach them.

You are my hiding place;
    you will protect me from trouble
    and surround me with songs of deliverance.

I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
    I will counsel you with my loving eye on you.
Do not be like the horse or the mule,
    which have no understanding
but must be controlled by bit and bridle
    or they will not come to you.
10 Many are the woes of the wicked,
    but the Lord’s unfailing love
    surrounds the one who trusts in him.

11 Rejoice in the Lord and be glad, you righteous;
    sing, all you who are upright in heart!

field of dame's rockets in light woods at dawn

the blessings of repentance

Through Psalm 32, David teaches a posture of repentance which yields rich rewards to those who seek to submit their hearts to God’s perfect work through it.

Forgiveness

David reminds us straight away of the blessings of repentance, the first being Forgiveness.

In verses one through five David contrasts the blessing of receiving forgiveness for sin confessed to God with the reality of the torment of unconfessed sin.

God not only forgives my sin but removes the guilt and shame of my sin.

David received deliverance from his sin, and his situation, but while he desired deliverance, he looked rather to submit to repentance, and allow God to change him, rather than his circumstance.

As I repent of my sin, I receive forgiveness, and within the forgiveness rests deliverance.

Transformation

One of the treasures of this Psalm greets me in verses eight and nine; wisdom. Notice David’s repentant heart of submission invites the wisdom and counsel of the Lord!

Repentance is more than forgiveness of sin; within the submission of a penitent heart, the Holy Spirit performs the conforming work of tomorrow’s becoming.

close up of lavender buds

Bringing us to another of the blessings of repentance, Transformation.

When we fully submit to repentance, like David, we become someone who desires God’s way rather than our own. Which draws us into the intimacy of the teaching and counsel of the Lord.

While repentance erases the sin and guilt of past sin, it also strengthens us against future sin, transforming our minds and hearts.

Unfailing Love

Tucked into verse 10, may be the best blessing of all: God’s unfailing love.

David reminds us God’s unfailing love surrounds all who trust in Him for forgiveness and deliverance.

There is no fear in the perfect love of God ( 1 John 4:18) inviting us to trust God fully through repentance and confession of sin.

As a child of God, I have access to my heavenly Father without fear of retribution or punishment, allowing me to confess and forsake my sins.

yellow and orange lenten rose

The blessing of obedience

Ultimately, submission to God in repentance comes from an obedient heart. David personifies this level of obedience so well in Psalm 32. Recognizing his particular need, he seeks realignment with God’s heart first and foremost through confession of sin.

By relinquishing his own way through a penitent heart, David receives the gift of forgiveness, transformation, and deliverance all covered in God’s unfailing and perfect love.

This Lenten season, as I journey through realigning my heart with God’s heart, my first stop is relinquishing my own way through repentance. Celebrating the gift of “becoming” through transformation as God’s teaching and counsel permeate my soul and life.

Where are you on your Lenten Journey?

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