June 17 I Friday

Nehemiah 7-9

Acts 3



“When I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night Your hand was heavy on me; my strength was sapped as in the heat of summer.”    —Psalm 32:3-4


The psalmist in the opening verse of this devotion is David. He describes how he felt as he hid his sin away from God. Many of us could relate to how David feels when, as early as our young childhood, we sin and try to cover it up. Like we may use a crayon and draw all over the wall, but when we hear Mom walking into the room, we quickly hide the crayon behind our back. Then, as Mom stands in the room and sees us, our siblings and the drawing on the wall, we pretend it was not us who did the masterpiece. But as Mom begins to interrogate us on what happened, we start to feel that burning within ourselves as we try to cover up our sin. Although we may get away with committing a transgression, we cannot get away from our conscience. The longer we keep silent about our crime the more we become overwhelmed with searing hot pain. The truth is, we can get away with the original act, but oftentimes, it is the cover-up that causes so much pain.

       The opening verse shows us that David’s cover-up took a huge toll on him. Physically, David’s body struggled, as he wrote, “my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long.” Psychologically, David was troubled in his mind: “For day and night Your hand was heavy on me.” The Hebrew word for “hand” is oftentimes used to denote the strength or power of a father’s hand upon his child. This reminds me of a time when I was a child, we would take long trips in the car to different destinations. My brother and I would be sitting in the back seat, and inevitably, we would get into fights with one another. My dad would be driving down the road and when he had had it, he would reach back with his hand and grab one of our legs and squeeze it really hard. We used to have a name for this growing up—we called it “the claw.” When we would misbehave in the backseat, causing all kinds of distractions, all of a sudden, the claw would start to reach back.

       When David talked about God’s heavy hand upon him, he was talking about the reality that God had laid hold of him and would not let him go. All of these were simply symptoms of the real problem plaguing him, a spiritual problem that was manifesting physical symptoms. 

       Our iniquity could have “the claw” of God grabbing us today—may we surrender our fight to cover our sin and honestly acknowledge our transgression to the Lord.


Prayer: Gracious God, thank You for “the claw” that helps me realize my transgression against You. I refuse to hide my iniquities from You, but choose to come before You, honestly confessing my sins. In Jesus’s name, amen!

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