Dropping from a dusty and well-read copy of a paperback biography fell a neatly folded, faded, and forgotten letter written to the Lord; a personal covenant. It contained a confession of sin, steps of repentance, and commitment to a deeper spirituality. The covenant had been left forgotten and slowly eaten by silverish and the proverbial “moths and rust” of the past several years. The book was given to me by the now deceased family member of a deceased saint, and as the paper fell to the floor of my study, it was as if a window into the depths of a man’s heart had been left exposed.
May each of us be discipled to desire the Lord with such depth. May moths and rust and silverfish not consume our treasured desires for the heart of Christ. The letter reads:
- I have been unfaithful. I’ve chosen my actions and attitude according to the eyes of men and not according to your commands and my desires to please you. I have been unfaithful to people I’ve met, not keeping them in prayers or keeping record, or following up. I have despised the holy life and sought pleasure and rebellion, as it suited me. I have not turned from my sin but still enjoyed it, not hating what you hate. I have not carefully planned my days and the time as to use what you have given me most efficiently. I have not spent enough time on the Lord’s Day in your Word and praying, using it instead as a time to sleep, eat, and hang out. Lord give me strength and passion to desire you. Fill me with your presence and help my goal to be nothing less than living my life as pleasing to your sight, in thankfulness, and a desire for others to know you. There are so many things that I must do that I don’t. Help me especially to be careful about finding time for prayer and reading of the Word. Also for keeping in contact with people.
- I have been carnal and unspiritual. I let myself be calloused to the sins of this world, thinking that I am “experienced” and “street smart”. I get preoccupied with daily tasks instead of continually keeping the whole picture in mind of sin and salvation and the world to come. I have not been aware enough of opportunities to share the gospel.
- I have been selfish. I think I deserve comfort and satisfaction—good food, and lots of sleep. People caring for me and helping me. My life should be one of sacrifice—losing sleep, ignoring opportunities for useless pleasure. Taking time to encourage others.
- [sic] I have been cold. I have so little compassion for the lost or joy in fellow believers. I don’t have a zeal to preserve your holiness and a great sorriness for sin. Lord, burn within me—give me a fire that is not quenched.
It closes, ” I have not duly studied the Word of God. I think that other books, about Christianity, are more helpful than the Word itself. I don’t give myself to the knowledge and memorization of the Word. I sin in all these ways because I don’t know and love you well enough to have an insatiable desire to please you. I want to spend one hour each morning in the Word and prayer. to [sic] meet with you alone in the quiet of the time. How can I know you if we are not in conversation?”
“We must not seek rest or ease in an [sic] world where He whom we love had none.”