Summary: David relates to us the right way to deal with sin and regret: Sorrow, Supplication, and Success!
by Scott R. Bayles, preacher
Church of Christ
"God could never forgive me. I’ve done such horrible things." How many times has that thought passed through the synapses of human brains? How many times has it lodged in your mind? The frustrating thing about time is that it always moves forward. There is no "R" on the stick-shift, no reverse in the gears. Time never moves backward, not an inch, not a step, never. The hands of the clock always move clockwise, and the pages of the calendar are torn off in only one direction. Therefore a deed once done, can never be undone. A word once spoken, can never be unsaid. As a result, all of us live with certain regrets. People deal with those regrets in different ways (Nelson 363).
Many people today deal with sin and remorse by drowning it. Some drown it in alcohol and drug abuse. Marijuana use among teenagers increased 37% between 1994 and 1995. The use of LSD and other hallucinogens was up 54%. And the use of cocaine increased by 166%. Over fourteen million Americans are in 12-step programs. Many Americans are drinking and drugging themselves to death in order to escape the pangs of our own sin and guilt. Marlon Brando was once young, trim, and handsome. Millions of girls dreamed about him. But now he weighs over four hundred pounds, and once said, "I’m sorry for all the harm I’ve done and all the troubles I’ve brought to others in my life. I’ve never been a good parent or a good husband. I’ve been too busy with my own life to have time for others. Now, I’m a guilty old man whose ashamed of the kind of life I’ve led. There’s nothing left for me except eating" (Nelson 367).
Other people deal with guilt by trying to deny it. They base their morals on societal consensus. And then adjust them to any shape or size. Remorse becomes just a nagging relic, a Victorian antique, a psychosis to be denied.
Some people deal with regret by deflecting it. They blame other people for their failures, faults, and shortcoming. They blame their parents or their environments--a technique that goes all the way back to the Garden of Eden, when Adam blamed Eve and Eve blamed the serpent.
But sooner or later, all these techniques fail, and we find that we can’t escape the consequences of our own sinfulness and guilt. The Bible says, "’Although you wash yourself with soda And use much soap, The stain of your iniquity is before Me,’ declares the Lord God" (Jeremiah 2:22). Sin is the corrosion of the soul. How can we get rid of it? We can’t drown it, deny it or deflect it. We can only dissolve it in the blood of Jesus!
Psalm 6 is the first of a special class known as "penitential palms," expressing repentance and sorrow for sin. Let’s read this Psalm together, as David relates to us the right way to deal with sin and regret.
Psalm 6:1-10 (NASB-u)
O Lord, do not rebuke me in Your anger, Nor chasten me in Your wrath.  Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am pining away; Heal me, O Lord, for my bones are dismayed.  And my soul is greatly dismayed; But You, O Lord -- how long?  Return, O Lord, rescue my soul; Save me because of Your lovingkindness.  For there is no mention of You in death; In Sheol who will give You thanks?
 I am weary with my sighing; Every night I make my bed swim, I dissolve my couch with my tears.  My eye has wasted away with grief; It has become old because of all my adversaries.
 Depart from me, all you who do iniquity, For the Lord has heard the voice of my weeping.  The Lord has heard my supplication, The Lord receives my prayer.  All my enemies will be ashamed and greatly dismayed; They shall turn back, they will suddenly be ashamed.
The inscription tells us that David wrote this psalm. He describes his plight--foes without, fear within--and cries out to God for mercy. He was sure he was facing death, which indicates that his experience was real and that he wasn’t using sickness and war only as metaphors for his personal troubles. As we deal with our own failures and weaknesses, we could learn a great deal from David’s example. In this psalm, David records three (3) stages in his difficult experience of moving by faith from trial to triumph. The first is...
In the second stanza, David’s anguish is vividly described, "I am weary with my sighing; Every night I make my bed swim, I dissolve my couch with my tears.  My eye has wasted away with grief; It has become old because of all my adversaries."