I have swept away your offenses like a cloud, your sins like the morning mist. – Isaiah 44:22
Micah 7:18 Where is another God like you, who pardons the guilt of the remnant, passing over the rebellious acts and sins of his special people? You will not stay angry with your people forever, because you delight in showing unfailing love.
Down through the ages, cleaning of one kind of another has been part of life. Many consider it essential, while others consider it overrated. In modern times, routine cleaning is often done regularly. Standard domestic cleaning includes dusting and washing surfaces, wiping the outside of appliances and cabinets, simple cleaning of the bathrooms, and vacuuming the floors.
Deep cleaning is another matter altogether. It is comprehensive and hard work. It is top-to-bottom cleaning with an emphasis on thoroughness. Deep cleaning professionals know exactly where to focus their efforts. The result is a super clean, sanitized, and sparkling environment. Routine cleaning will maintain this cleanliness when done properly.
However, over time clutter seems to have a remarkable way of sneaking into our living space. Things just seem to creep in, accumulate, and pile themselves up in. For those who are neatness challenged, entire tables or desks can be lost for days, even months under the detritus.
The same thing is true of our souls. Over our lifetimes we accumulate spiritual and emotional clutter and impurity. This is hard to recognize and effectively deal with. Because we are often self-protective, we either accuse or excuse ourselves (Romans 2:15). Yet, no matter how filthy or overwhelming, the worst consecrated trash can be removed.
The Father is a “professional deep cleaner.” He is quite capable of thoroughly cleansing our iniquity and sin. He then sweeps away the accumulation (Psalms 51:2). Regardless of how filthy or overwhelming, the worst debris of our lives can be deep cleaned.
It is important to understand that the debris in our souls is not superficial. Rather, our souls are thickly layered with multiple strata of moral and spiritual pollution. Numerous deep cleaning efforts may be required to declutter what we have managed to amass during our lifetimes of rebellion and defiance.
When it comes to spiritual deep cleaning there are two approaches.
We tend to focus on the worst of our past and feel condemned, sullied, and guilty. The more we focus on our past, the more we add to the condemnation we already feel. We become even more mired in regret, sorrow, and grief. Yet self-recrimination in no way cleanse us. Our sad remorseful feelings remain intact.
The Father has a more excellent way. The Father is not in the condemnation business. Rather He is in the redemption and reclamation business. He seeks to cleanse and restore each child of the King. He does not heap guilt and shame upon us. He calls upon us not to remember the past, but rather to allow Him to deep clean and remove it. He sweeps away our sins, even the most loathsome and disgusting of them. On top of that, He, who is omniscient and knows everything, chooses not to remember them.
Isaiah 43:25 I, even I, am the one who wipes out your transgressions for My own sake. And I will not remember your sins.
How amazing! The Father accepts us and treats us as though we had never sinned at all. How can this be? He knows what we truly are. We are no more than the dust of the Earth gathered together and formed into living souls.
8 The LORD is compassionate and merciful, slow to get angry, and filled with unfailing love.
9 He will not constantly accuse us, nor remain angry forever.
10 He does not punish us for all our sins; he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve.
12 He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west.
13 The LORD is like a father to his children, tender and compassionate to those who fear him.
14 For he knows how weak we are; he remembers we are only dust.
REFLECT & PRAY
If the Father does not remember our sins, why should we?
Father, help me to remember the deep cleaning and restoration You have provided. Rather than recall and rehearse my worst decisions and failures, help me to focus on your unfailing love, deep cleansing, and forgiveness.
How does the Father cleanse and purify us? One of His primary tools is difficult circumstances, a.k.a. as affliction.
Psalms 119:67 Before I was afflicted, I went astray, but now I closely follow your word.
When we experience affliction, the wise choice is to try to find out what He is trying to show and teach us. Covered over, whitewashed, repressed sin tends to bubble up and haunt us. It hinders our relationship with the Father. The Father’s goal is to remove every impediment, cleanse us, and draws into His loving arms.
He provides purification from the worst of our life experiences. Often, He will confront us. We come to face to face with what we have done and who we really are. Often then, and only then, do we seek forgiveness and to change our ways. Consider David and his grievous sin with Bathsheba and all the horrific collateral damage.
The Father sent Nathan to confront David. He became furious with himself and was left in anguish and remorse.
2 Samuel 12:7-9
7 Then Nathan said to David, “You are that man! The LORD, the God of Israel, says: I anointed you king of Israel and saved you from the power of Saul.
9 Why, then, have you despised the word of the LORD and done this horrible deed?
David turned to the Father.
4 Against you, and you alone, have I sinned; I have done what is evil in your sight. You will be proved right in what you say, and your judgment against me is just.
7 Purify me from my sins, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
8 Oh, give me back my joy again; you have broken me – now let me rejoice.
9 Don’t keep looking at my sins. Remove the stain of my guilt.
10 Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a loyal spirit within me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation and make me willing to obey you.
When any child of the King does the same, our sins will be evaporated like the morning mist. We will know the Father and experience His presence. The Father extends His remarkable grace and lovingkindness to all who come to Him.