After reading Psalm 38, I am struck once again by the devastating effects of unconfessed sin in the human heart.(my heart included)
No specifics are given; we don't know the nature of his sin, or what he did to violate God's will. But one thing is clear: unconfessed sin is hard on the human spirit.
He knows God is not pleased. He prays, "O Lord, rebuke me not in your anger, nor discipline me in your wrath. For your arrows have sunk into me, and your hand has come down on me.(38:1-2)
This is what the Holy Spirit's convicting power feels like in our hearts when we try to hide sin - the Spirit troubles us and we sense God's displeasure.
But this is a blessing in disguise. The day we no longer feel anguish of soul and deep remorse for our sinful actions, we should be very concerned.
For the rest of the Psalm the writer exposes us to some harrowing details about sin's effects:
-Physically, he feels undone...there's no health in my bones because of my sin. Unconfessed sin weighs on him like a ten-ton weight. He is utterly bowed down and flattened by its weight.
-Like a putrid infection, his sin festers and contaminates his soul.
-Emotionally, he longs for God's comfort, but he is alone without a friend in the world.
Relief of conscience finally comes in v.18: I am sorry for my iniquity; I am sorry for my sin. True confession of sin hides nothing; it agrees with God's verdict and runs headlong into the arms of God's mercy.
O God, may you be true and everyone a liar. We have all sinned and fall short of your glory. Forgive our rebellious ways; convict us, disturb us, afflict us with remorse and a longing for you. Open our eyes so we will see our sin, but also see the cross where Jesus died. We run to you for comfort, strength, and healing for our sin sick soul. As far as the east is from the west, so far have you removed our sin from us. Thank you Lord! Amen