"Create in me a pure heart, Oh God...."
Are you familiar with the story of King David's debacle with Bathsheba? Here the prophet Nathan confronts David and his sin. Because of this, David became honest with God and confessed his sin. One outcome of this repentance was the composition of a song by David seeking restoration of his relationship with God. This song is today's Psalm.
Getting honest with God is the first step in restoring a relationship that is tattered with God. An equally important step is to seek spiritual cleansing. This image of getting clean permeates the Bible in many stories. It is important that we purge ourselves whenever that unclean feeling overtakes us. Whether it is a ceremonial washing of repentance, or the sacrament of Baptism, each of us needs it.
The above verse shows David praying for a pure or cleansed heart. He recognizes that this is something only God can bestow. It's a simple process, we confess and he cleans. The idea of pure might better translate to purified. It refers to the heart after it has gone throught the fire and come out like gold. Here, all the impurities are removed. Let's get this straight, it's a lifelong process - not something that is over once and for all. Without this ongoing experience of purification and cleansing, our spiritual lives will get bogged down in our everyday human nature.
Draw a heart today where it can be viewed often. Let this remind you to echo David's beautiful prayer. Ask God to keep cleansing your heart each time you need it. In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said that the payoff of having a purified heart is a deeper vision of God and a blessed life.
Father, purify my heart.
I want to be honest with you always.
Let me experience your love today.