Devotional

Day 3: A broken and contrite heart

Rev Dr Jimmy Tan, Daily Devotions for Lent 2020 // February 27, 2020, 9:48 pm

Lent devotional 2020

Lent devotional 2020

Bible reading for Feb 28, 2020 | Psalm 51:1-5, 17-18
 

 

Having a broken and contrite heart can seem to be so contrary to success when so much of contemporary society prizes standing one’s ground at all cost.

There is a quote that is attributed to Napoleon Bonaparte, the late illustrious military campaigner and Emperor of the French, that reads: “In politics, never retreat, never retract, never admit a mistake.”

Yet, in Psalm 51, we find David, at the height of his career as King of Israel and Commander of his army, repenting before God with a broken and contrite heart.

A broken and contrite heart is the very disposition that will bring healing and life.

The defining moment came when Nathan, the prophet, confronted him on his sins of adultery and murder.

Rather than condemnation, that moment when David admitted his grave sins was also the moment when grace penetrated his heart in deeply redeeming ways.

The fruit of a broken spirit and a contrite heart was the very condition that rescued him from his condemnation. For it was in that condition, as he cried out to God, that God extended His mercy to him in full measure, blotted out his transgressions and cleansed him thoroughly of his sin.

Rather than insisting on appearing respectable, going before God with a broken and contrite heart is the very disposition that will bring healing and life, rather than ridicule and death.

The Lord is One who sees the heart, and He stoops to rescue those who come before Him with a broken spirit.

This Lent, let us give up the resistances of a stubborn heart, and choose instead to give God even the remnants of a broken heart.

Prayer

Search me, O God, and know my heart, that I may realise where I have sinned against You.

Have pity on me and forgive me, for I repent before You with a broken and contrite heart.

Cleanse me thoroughly, I pray, that I may walk in the freedom of Your mercy and steadfast love. In the name of Jesus, amen.

Action

Take a moment now to go before God with a broken spirit and contrite heart. Ask God to search your heart to reveal anything that is unclean or displeasing before Him.

You might choose to pray the prayer above.


This Lenten devotional is taken from the book, Give Up, Take Up, Follow Him! Daily Devotions for Lent 2020 and republished with permission from the Bible Society of Singapore. 

It is available here in English, Chinese, Hokkien, Tamil and Bahasa Indonesia. 

About the author

Rev Dr Jimmy Tan, Daily Devotions for Lent 2020

Rev Dr Jimmy Tan is a lecturer in pastoral and practical theology, and chaplain of Trinity Theological College. Give Up, Take Up, Follow Him! is a collection of daily readings and reflections for Lent 2020. This is the 15th edition of the Lenten devotional, published by Sower Publishers, a ministry of The Bible Society of Singapore. It is commissioned by the National Council of Churches of Singapore.