A clean heart create for me, O God, and a steadfast spirit renew within me. Cast me not out from your presence, and your Holy Spirit take not from me. R. A heart contrite and humbled, O God, you will not spurn.

My preparation for the Sacrament of Reconciliation, always includes a prayer to the Holy Spirit. I ask him to replace my pride with humility, to reveal all my sinfulness to me and to allow me to see my heart as the heavenly Father sees it. Sometimes I’m amazed at the mercy I’ve already experienced in the happenings of my life. Sometimes, I’d prefer to look away, because the self the Spirit shows me is difficult to look in the face.

No matter what the Spirit shows me, I give thanks for it because I know that I’m being led another step closer to holiness. Today’s Psalm and Response seem to echo my confession preparation prayer. I want a clean heart, a steadfast spirit, and the privilege of receiving our Lord’s love, mercy, and absolution through the mouth and hands of his priest.

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