Chapter-a-Day Psalm 130

A long list on the balance sheet. If you, God, kept records on wrongdoings, who would stand a chance? As it turns out, forgiveness is your habit, and that's why you're worshiped. Psalm 130:3-4 (MSG)

Part of my job is analyzing phone calls that people take as part of their Customer Service job, and then coaching them on how they can improve (a la "your call may be monitored to ensure quality service"). When I go into the coaching sessions, I never cease to be amazed at how hard people are on themselves. It's rare that I have to convince somebody they can do a better job. Most often, people criticize their own performance far more mercilessly than I ever would. Most of us are hurtfully self-critical.

I've discovered the same thing to be true when talking to people about their faith journey. Many of us, deep down, are so convinced that the balance sheet of wrong doings to good deeds is so heavily weighted towards the wrong doings that we're convinced God wants nothing to do with us. "You don't know what I've done," is a phrase I've heard a time or two. I've uttered it a few times myself.

On one hand, our natural inclination is correct. If God judged us based on our balance sheet, not one of us would stand a chance. However, when God's message tells us about Jesus dying for our sins, it simply means that He paid the price for our wrong doings. If you will believe Him, God makes a habit of tearing out the negative side of our balance sheet and tossing it in the incinerator.

I'm sure he's surprised when we keep bringing up the subject.

Creative Commons photo courtesy of Flickr and Alpha_Delta20

3 thoughts on “Chapter-a-Day Psalm 130”

  1. Man oh man, that one hit home, Tom!!
    Just this morning, I was speaking with a work acquaintance with whom I’ve formed a friendship over the years (on the phone, never met). She is a recovering smoker, recovering drug addict, recovering alcoholic, or just recovering from a rough life … She gave her life over to the Lord just a few years ago. She looks to me for prayer and encouragement when we speak.
    This morning she told me that her husband (still on drugs) moved out. She then broke her 52-day sober run in front of her daughter who was home for a weekend from a juvenile detention center. She contacted her AA sponsor and a lady that mentored her when she first became a Christian. I encouraged her that those were wonderful decisions and promised to be praying for her.
    “I still run from God sometimes, and I do such bad things. Do you think I’m still saved?” she asked me.
    I called her by name and I said, “God created you and He knows your heart. If we only got to Heaven by what we do or how we live, then none of us would make it. That’s why God sent Jesus – because He longs to reunite with us and love on us. If you gave your heart to the Lord, then you belong to Him and yes you are saved … by HIS GRACE because JESUS blood is more than enough to cover every last one of every one of our sins!”
    I can encourage others in this, but why do I have a hard time taking it to heart for myself?
    Thanks for an insightful devotional. I think I just wrote MY next blog post 😀 lol

  2. 3-4 If you, God, kept records on wrongdoings,
    who would stand a chance?
    As it turns out, forgiveness is your habit,
    and that’s why you’re worshiped.
    Our son has been testing us a lot lately. He wants to grow up, be in charge and give orders. The problem?…..he’s 8. It’s hard not to keep a running tally in your mind of how many times he has been wrong, talked back, etc. This passage reminds me how God treats me and how to keep the peace at the Roose home.

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