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Take Not Your Spirit from Me

Read: Psalm 51:7-12

Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. (v. 10)

When I was a child, one of my biggest fears was breaking the rules and “getting in trouble.” As I grew older, the fear of getting in trouble was replaced by the fear of damaging my relationships. I enjoyed the trust of parents, teachers, employers, and friends. I did not want to do anything to jeopardize their trust and the intimacy that came with it.

Many of the psalms were written by King David, the “man after [God’s] own heart” (1 Sam. 13:14). David enjoyed an unparalleled level of intimacy with the Lord. When David committed adultery and murder (2 Samuel 11), the domestic and political consequences were devastating. But the consequence David feared most was the loss of his communion with God. In his most famous prayer of confession, David asks, “Take not your Holy Spirit from me” (Ps. 51:11). Having known the intimate presence of God’s Spirit, David cannot imagine living without it.

The true goal of the Christian life is not “keeping out of trouble” by keeping God’s rules. The Christian’s true motivation is spiritual intimacy: the indwelling presence of God’s very life and love. Once you have experienced life with the Holy Spirit, you never want to live without it. Jesus took the punishment our sins deserve to guarantee that we would never lose his Spirit. —Ben Van Arragon

As you pray, confess your sin without fear and feel the reassuring presence of the Holy Spirit.

About the Author

Ben Van Arragon is a pastor, husband, and father of two teenage daughters. He has served the First Christian Reformed Church of Detroit since 2008. He writes and produces video teaching on the Bible and Reformed creeds and confessions. His writing for Words of Hope includes series on Jeremiah, Exodus, and Work and Rest.