Over the years I don’t know how many individuals who have become followers of Jesus, and have experienced His life-transforming forgiveness and grace, have admitted to me regretfully about their sinful past… They told me “that was B.C. – Before Christ – when I was young, irresponsible, and self-willed!” Sometimes it wasn’t those exact words – but it was the same message, nevertheless!
Hey, all of us who are followers of Jesus have a “B.C” – “All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God!” (Romans 3:23) But the “Good News” – the “Gospel” – is that, “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus!” (Romans 8:1)
I thought of that wonderful truth today as I read Psalm 25, which I labeled in my Bible: “The Prayer of a Redeemed Person Who was Once Young, Irresponsible, and Self-willed!” Perhaps – just perhaps – that person was you… or someone you know and love! Here’s some of the words of that prayer…
“To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul! O my God, in you I trust; let me not be put to shame; let not my enemies exult over me! Indeed, none who wait for you shall be put to shame…
“Make me to know your ways, O Lord; teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all the day long.
“Remember your mercy, O Lord, and your steadfast love… Remember not the sins of my youth or my transgressions; according to your steadfast love remember me, for the sake of your goodness, O Lord!
“Good and upright is the Lord! Therefore, he instructs sinners in the way. He leads the humble in what is right, and teaches the humble his way. All the paths of the Lord are steadfast love and faithfulness, for those who keep his covenant and his testimonies.
“For your name’s sake, O Lord, pardon my guilt, for it is great! Who is the person who fears the Lord? He will instruct them in the way that they should choose. Their soul shall abide in well-being… The friendship of the Lord is for those who fear him, and he makes known to them his covenant. My eyes are ever toward the Lord, for he will pluck my feet out of the net.
“Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted. The troubles of my heart are enlarged; bring me out of my distresses! Consider my affliction and my trouble, and forgive all my sins!
“Consider how many are my foes… Oh, guard my soul, and deliver me! Let me not be put to shame, for I take refuge in you. May integrity and uprightness preserve me, for I wait for you! (adapted from Psalm 25)
What a prayer! Hey, I was once “Young, irresponsible, and self-willed!” I have a B.C. – a “Before Christ” – just like many of you! But I’m so glad I met Jesus, asked for God’s forgiveness, and experienced His mercy and grace! So today, during my time of “coffee with the Lord,” I made the words of Psalm 25 my sincere prayer one more time!