Out of the depths I cry to you, LORD — Psalm 130:1
There is a story from Spain about a father and son who had become estranged. The son ran away from home, and his father set out to find him. The father searched for months, but to no avail. As a last-ditch effort, the father took out a full-page ad in a Madrid newspaper. The ad read: “Dear Paco, meet me in front of the newspaper office at noon on Saturday. All is forgiven. I love you. Your father.” The next Saturday, 800 men named Paco showed up, all looking for love and forgiveness from their fathers!
How many people in life are walking around looking for love and forgiveness from their Father in heaven?
If you’re like the rest of us, you have probably messed up once or twice in your life. We all make mistakes! As it says in Ecclesiastes 7:20, “Not a single person on earth is always good and never sins” (NLT). However, there is also a danger in thinking that you are only a sinner. Every time we fall, there is the risk that we will be too discouraged to get back up again. The next step after sin is repentance; yet sometimes, we find it hard to move on.
In Psalm 130 King David exclaims, “Out of the depths I call out to you . . .” The Jewish sages explain that the “depths” David is referring to is the depths of sin. Sometimes when we sin, we feel so low and so far from God. We feel like we are deep in the gutters of life. How can we possibly climb out? How can we face our God again? We feel distant, unlovable, and unworthy.
The sages caution us, “Do not consider yourself wicked in your self-estimation!” If we give in to those feelings of unworthiness, we will never be restored to our true selves. In Psalm 130 David reminds us that God is forgiving. He implores us to “put your hope in the LORD, for with the LORD is unfailing love and with him is full redemption” (v.7). God is waiting for us, loving us, and anticipating our return so that He can forgive us. We just need to return to Him.
Imagine that you open the newspaper today and you see an ad with your name on it: “Dear _____. Meet me in church on Sunday at noon. All is forgiven. I love you. Your Father.”
Believe it — God is sending us this message every day! We just need to turn to God in repentance, and He will do the rest.
With prayers for shalom, peace,
Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein
Founder and President