I Know    shepherd 14

 “For I know my transgressions . . .”     Psalm 51:3a

Do we?  Do we really know our transgressions?   Or are we like fish in water who don’t know they’re in water because, well, it’s all around them?

Lent is a time that invites us to step back and honestly assess our lives in the light of the one we profess to follow.   We’re called to do so not in a self-flagellating way, not to gain a smug sense of self-righteousness, but rather with the actual intent to live our lives differently.   In concrete ways.   That may require seeking some forgiveness, or doing some forgiving.   Or forgetting.   It may require doing some things that we haven’t done before.  It may involve creating some new habits.

We profess some of these transgressions each Sunday when we pray that prayer our Lord taught us.  Some of us ask forgiveness for debts, others trespasses, others sins.  Perhaps during the season of Lent, it wouldn’t hurt to name all three.   As I write this I think we’ll amend our saying of the Lord’s prayer in our fellowship at Blue Ridge to go:

“And forgive us our debts, our trespasses, and our sins, as we forgive our debtors, those who trespass against us, and those who sin against us.”

But knowing our transgressions is only half of the knowing of Lent.   The other half is knowing the source of our hope, our strength, our peace, our joy.   It’s knowing the one who, as in the words of John said:

I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me,  just as the Father knows me and I know the Father. And I lay down my life for the sheep.   (John 10:14-15)

And then:

Righteous Father, the world does not know you, but I know you; and these know that you have sent me.  I made your name known to them, and I will make it known, so that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.”    (John 17:25-26)


All-knowing God,

We confess to you the transgressions of our lives — at least those we are aware of.   Help us to recognize the subtle ways we may injure, violate others — and ourselves.   As we walk along with you in this season of Lent, above all, help us to know you, our Rock and our Redeemer.