You are currently viewing Psalm 51 ~ A Passionate Prayer for Pardon (BPV—Bubna Paraphrase Version)

Psalm 51 ~ A Passionate Prayer for Pardon (BPV—Bubna Paraphrase Version)

A Passionate Prayer for Pardon

A song of David composed for the choir director after Nathan the prophet came to him regarding his sin with Bathsheba.

1 Mighty and great one who knows all and is above all, I am desperate again for your unmerited kindness and mercy. Not because of who I am but because of who you are—a compassionate redeemer who loves the unlovely. Please remove the ugly stain of my sins.

Remove the stench of my sin as a river sweeps away debris downstream, taking it to your ocean of mercy.

3 I know what I have done. I own my failures. Everywhere I turn, I see the evidence of my foolish choices.

4 Sadly, I have deeply wounded people, but more than my offense against others, I have revolted against you. There are no excuses I can make, and you are entirely justified in bringing stern correction into my life.

5 Of course, you know I have always been far from perfect. I’ve never gone one day of my life without sinning in some way against you.

6 Amazingly, you keep rooting out the darkness in my soul and the hidden areas of my heart. Like a light piercing the dark, you keep pouring your truth into the empty crevasses of my being. Unbelievably, and in a way that astounds me, you are helping me to grow and not just go through this heartbreaking experience. I am learning more about you, myself, and your wisdom through this mess.

7 Oh God, with sobs of remorse and yet a hopeful plea of longing, I need your touch that makes me clean again. Don’t just cover my stained heart; refresh it and make it brand new. I have been rejected and forsaken like a leper, but you can make me whole again. You can redeem and restore my life.

8 I want to hear my lips laugh and sing in your presence. I need to feel your pleasure once again. Rightfully so, you crushed me and broke my stubborn heart, but as grapes crushed into wine, let my soul flow with joy because of your goodness.

9 Let me say it once more. I need to be painfully clear regarding my request. Please see beyond my stupidity. Please remove all my sins and bury them so deep in a sea of your mercy and grace that no one—most of all you—will ever throw them in my face again.

10 I need heart surgery, Father. I need you. I need your help to become unfaltering, dedicated, dependable, and trustworthy.

11 I don’t know what I’d do without you and your presence. Without your Holy Spirit’s commitment to change me from the inside out, I’d be like a tumbleweed in the desert.

12 So, I humbly ask for restoration. Return me to the place where I feel the rapture of your saving joy in my life. And even though you know I am prone to wander, always help me maintain a short distance between my heart and repentance, between my heart and yours.

13 Please give me a vision for my future where somehow, I get to show others what it looks like and means to be a trophy of your grace. I want people to see me and think, “Wow, if God can love and forgive that guy, there must be hope for me.”

14 I robbed someone of everything, and that failure and blood is on me. But I ask you not to make that the defining moment of my life. Don’t let me or anyone else put a period where you put a comma. Let your saving work of grace and righteousness cause me to lift my hands again in worship to you.

15 Most awesome God of all, turn my eyes and head toward you and open my mouth to shout your praises for everyone to hear: “God is good! He is kind! Our Father truly is merciful and full of grace.”

16 If there’s anything I’ve learned through all of this is, it that my performance—whether good or bad—isn’t ultimately what makes you happy. Moreover, my penance and self-punishment aren’t your aim or desire.

17 What catches your eye and blesses you most is a broken, remorseful, and repentant heart. You never reject or turn your face from anyone who is wrecked, shattered, and desperate for more of you.

18 One more thing, Father, I know that my sin has torn down the faith of others. I know my actions had a ripple effect on the lives of people who put me on a pedestal. Please restore them too. Please help them to refocus their full attention on you and never again on an imperfect man.

19 I look forward to worshipping you in a “sacrifice of service” toward others someday. Without a doubt, full restoration is your intent, and that astounds me. When the right time comes, you can even use a fractured vessel like me.

Kurt Bubna

Kurt W. Bubna has published seven books, is an internationally recognized blogger, conference and retreat speaker, as well as an experienced life and leadership coach. Bubna has over forty years of experience working with individuals, teams, and a wide variety of business and non-profit organizations.