1 Out of the depths I cry to you, O LORD;
2 O Lord, hear my voice.
Let your ears be attentive
to my cry for mercy.
3 If you, O LORD, kept a record of sins,
O Lord, who could stand?
4 But with you there is forgiveness;
therefore you are feared.
5 I wait for the LORD, my soul waits,
and in his word I put my hope.
6 My soul waits for the Lord
more than watchmen wait for the morning,
more than watchmen wait for the morning.
7 O Israel, put your hope in the LORD,
for with the LORD is unfailing love
and with him is full redemption.
8 He himself will redeem Israel
from all their sins.
Crying to God from the depths.... some of us... maybe most of us have been there. I know I have. Sometimes, certainly in recent years, it's been a familiar place to cry out to God from.
But today my devotional is speaking to guys crying out to God from a particular kind of "depths"; the depths of having comitted a sexual offence against a child or in some way (by reason of our sexuality) fallen afoul of the law and our society.
There is a particular pain for a boylover when his world is torn apart by accusation, charges, separation from family and loved ones, social stigma and even jail time. I'm not making any comment here on the rightness or wrongness of the law... it exists in our society along with all the prejudice and ignorance that goes with it... and some of us have been deeply affected by it.... and many of us live in fear of becoming so (even if we've done nothing wrong).
"If You, O LORD, kept a record of sins who could stand?" Whatever accounting and labeling law and society uses... it is not God's accounting. With our Father is mercy and forgivenss.... unfailing love and FULL redemption.
In Jesus we find complete and total forgiveness of our sin no matter what anyone, anywhere may say. I have a friend who was sexed by a teenaged uncle when she was 8. She says, "once a man has sex with a child he sells his soul and ceases to be human".... fortunately God is not of the same oppinion. He redeems us from ALL our sins.
Have no fear brothers, if you come to Jesus there is no wrong He cannot wash away, no past He will not overlook, no offence He will not pardon. He loves us completely and totally. He accepts us and willingly gave his life for us. Everyone who calls on His name will be saved.
Father, King of mercy and grace,
today my prayer is for any brother feeling overwhelmed by the consequences and stigma of sin. I pray that they may know your full forgiveness, I pray that they may find repentance and release and forgiveness in You. Comfort those suffering the consequences of falling afoul of the law and restore them to healthy relations with or in place of those they may have lost.
For those struggling with temptation, I ask your mercy. Deliver us from temptaion and keep us from evil. Give strength and conviction to those who need it. Send brothers to support and encourage those whom most need that.
Thank You for giving Your Son Jesus.... the lamb of God.... who takes away the sins of the world.