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Prayer, Plain and Simple

King David was known as “a man after God’s own heart.” David loved God, lived with passion and prayed with poetic and transparent honesty. But David was also a sinner. He stole the wife of one of his most loyal soldiers, conceived a child by her and then to cover his deceit, murdered the man. But once this crime was exposed by Nathan, the prophet, David turned again to God. His prayer asking for forgiveness is written in the Bible as Psalm 51. Here’s a portion of that prayer.

O loving and kind God, have mercy. Have pity upon me and take away the awful stain of my transgressions. Oh, wash me, cleanse me from this guilt. Let me be pure again. For I admit my shameful deed-it haunts me day and night. It is against you and you alone I sinned and did this terrible thing. You saw it all, and your sentence against me is just. Create in me a new, clean heart, O God, filled with clean thoughts and right desires. Don’t toss me aside, banished forever from your presence. Don’t take Your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me again the joy of your salvation, and make me willing to obey you. (Psalm 51:1-12 TLB)

All of us need forgiveness. If something is separating you from God, repeat this ancient prayer. Jesus came to make the hope expressed in this prayer a reality for anyone who will ask!

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