If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.
2 Chronicles 7:14, ESV
When Paul writes in Philippians 1:21, “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.” He reminds us of what we find throughout Scripture: the Lord God never leaves those who belong to Him. God listens to His people and is attentive to our prayers. The words given to Solomon after the dedication of the first Temple in Jerusalem highlight this promise and are meant to draw the people back to the first five books of the Bible. Repeatedly, throughout the Bible, we see the people of God reject God and turn to false idols only to cry out to Him in times of distress in which our Lord provided rescue. This pattern has never stopped throughout the ages. When we realize our sin and cry out for His forgiveness, He gives it abundantly. That is the purpose of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ for our sins. The reality is that death will eventually come to us all, but then we have the question of eternity. Our salvation is not dependent upon us living perfect lives. Only one has lived such a life, and they crucified Him. It is dependent upon whose heart we seek. If we seek after the heart of our Lord and desire to do what is right in His eyes, then we can find comfort and be assured that He is with us. However, if we seek after all the things of this world, forgetting God in the pursuit of our selfish desires, we should ask ourselves where we place our trust. It isn’t that God won’t forgive a transgression, but how does God forgive something that we are unwilling to confess? In our confession, we humbly come before God, and we can confidently know that He forgives and will restore us. Does that mean we will receive all that we desire? Most certainly not. God will, however, change the focus of the hearts of those who are truly His. Let us humble ourselves and seek not for our will to be done but for God’s.
Let us pray. I thank you, my heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ, your dear Son, that you have kept me this night from all harm and danger, and I ask you to protect me this day also from sin and every evil, that in all I do today, I may please you. For into your hands, I commend myself, my body and soul, and all that is mine. Let your holy angel watch over me, that the wicked foe have no power over me. Amen.