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How to Study the Bible

with Nicole Unice

Confess and Receive: The Second Secret of the Good Life (Psalm 51)

00:00 22:09
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Today, we’re going to be working through Psalm 51, and we’re going to work through it as a devotional using the Alive Method. I encourage you to get out your bible and journal as you listen.


Notice what you notice. Write down what stands out to you – that is God speaking to you through his Word. That alone is a beginning of a conversation with the Spirit.

In Psalm 51:

David acknowledges specific sin

He longs for restoration, asking for it (“grant me a willing spirit”)

A willingness to talk about your sin to testify to the grace of God


This is the psalm David wrote after his sin with Bathsheba (listen to our episode on this story).


We cannot move into a place of joy and peace if we have unconfessed sin or thought patterns that do not align with the glory of God and the truth of his Word and promises to us.


1. Do you have a practice of regular confession? If you feel blocked or dull in your study of God’s Word, consider what you need to confess to God. What places do you live in fear, anxiety, self-pity, or self-hatred? Are you able to say, “This thought pattern in me, does not represent the glory of God.” (If you have a clinical thought pattern problem, you might need outside therapies! Or you may not have a clinical crisis but still carry stuck thought patterns).

2. After confession, we draw on God’s righteousness: A huge part of our faith is understanding that we throw ourselves onto the goodness of God, that we claim his character and his actions as the way we live and move (completely counter-cultural to the messages of today). I don’t have to claim to be righteous, I’m drawing on God’s righteousness. I need to own up to my mistakes and faulty and self-focused thinking.

Two verses to memorize:

Psalm 71:2: In your righteousness, rescue me and deliver me; turn your ear to me and save me.

1 John 1:9: if we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

3. The more we consider, confess, and spend time with Jesus, the more we love what we love and detest what he detests: As we hang out more with Jesus, we want to be more like Jesus. As we look at ourselves clearly and objectively, we are going to discover that we don’t like the ways of wickedness, bit by bit. Sure, we keep failing and falling, but our desires begin to be for what God desires. It’s hard to spend time with the creator of the universe and keep claiming that we oversee our reality and our view of the world IF we are willing to confess and receive.


Nicole’s Book: Help My Bible Is Alive!

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January 09, 2023
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Meet Your Host
Nicole Unice is a Bible teacher, author, and passionate communicator who delights in bringing God’s Word to life in a personal and relevant way. Her training as a counselor informs her work, as she emphasizes the importance of facing our own reality and embracing the transforming power of God’s grace. Nicole is ordained as a teaching elder in the Evangelical Presbyterian Church. Her latest book, “Help, My Bible is Alive” is a 30-day experience designed to help people experience God through the Bible.

Nicole has spent twenty years serving the local church, first in student ministry (where she’s never lost her love of a great group game) and then leading start-ups of all kinds, from leadership development to capital campaigns. She now teaches and consults with churches and ministries to strengthen their stories and cut through confusion to discover the next right steps for success.
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