November 18, 2009

O my Savior, help me.

"O my Savior, help me.
I am slow to learn, prone to forget, and weak to climb;
I am in the foothills when I should be on the heights;
I am pained by my graceless heart,
my prayerless days,
my poverty of love,
my sloth in the heavenly race,
my sullied conscience,
my wasted hours,
my unspent opportunities.
I am blind while the light shines around me:
take the scales from my eyes,
grind to dust my heart of unbelief.
Make it my highest joy to study you,
meditate on you,
gaze on you,
sit like Mary at your feet,
lean like John on your breast,
appeal like Peter to your love,
count like Paul all things but dung.
I believe, help my unbelief. Amen"

This is a confession of sin we often read together as a church body.

I’ve been considering the difference between sin-loathing and self-loathing. It gets muddy in my mind, though it shouldn’t. I think too highly of myself and not highly enough of Christ who atoned for my sin. When I ask Mike about sin/self loathing, I interrupt him in his morning quiet time over breakfast and the Word just before he goes to work. He doesn’t grimace at being bothered or having to change gears in his thinking. He shares some scripture and makes a few comments and I’m washed. I don't think our discussion or my consideration of sin loathing is over. (Oh, may it never be.)
Romans 7:24-8:1

And again I joyfully sing a hymn worth repeating:

O I am my Beloved’s
And my Beloved is mine!
He brings a poor vile sinner
Into His house of wine
I stand upon His merit -
I know no other stand,
Not e’en where glory dwelleth
In Emmanuel’s land.

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