Look upon mine affliction and my pain; and forgive all my sins. Psalm 25:18
It is good for us when prayers about our sorrows are linked with pleas concerning our sins — when, being under God’s hand, we do not focus exclusively on our pain, but remember our sins against God. It is also good to take both sorrow and sin to the same place. It was to God that David carried his sorrow: It was to God that David confessed his sin.
Notice, then, we must take our sorrows to God. Even your little sorrows you may cast upon God, for He counts the hairs of your head; and your great sorrows you may commit to Him, for He holds the ocean in the hollow of His hand. Go to Him, whatever your present trouble may be, and you will find Him able and willing to relieve you. But we must take our sins to God too. We must carry them to the cross, that the blood may fall upon them, to purge away their guilt and to destroy their defiling power.
The special lesson of the text is this: we are to go to the Lord with sorrows and with sins in the right spirit. Note that all David asks concerning his sorrow is, “Consider my affliction and my trouble”; but the next petition is vastly more explicit, definite, decided, plain — “Forgive all my sins.”
Many sufferers would have reversed it: “Remove my affliction and my pain, and consider my sins.” But David does not; he cries, “Lord, when it comes to my affliction and my pain, I will not dictate to Your wisdom. Lord, look at them — I will leave them to You. I would like to have my pain removed, but do as You will. But as for my sins, Lord, I know what needs to happen — I must have them forgiven; I cannot endure to live under their curse for a moment.”
A Christian counts sorrow lighter in the scale than sin; he can bear to have troubles continue, but he cannot bear the burden of his transgressions.
-C. H. Spurgeon