The one who conceals his sins will not prosper, but whoever confesses and renounces them will find mercy. Proverbs 28:13
From the Garden of Eden, when Adam first confesses to God they had eaten from the Tree of Life, all through the Bible to the book of Revelation at the final judgment; the acknowledgment of our actions and confession of one’s sin is talked about in scripture. It’s a vital part of the Christian faith.
As I pondered over this verse for the week, I considered how much time Christians spend confessing their sins to God (1 John 1:9) or others (James 5:16). I remember as a child laying in bed at night and talking to God. As I got to the confessional part of the prayer, I would say, “And God, please forgive me of all my sins. I don’t think I did much that was bad today but forgive me just in case.”
From attending church as a child, I knew that confession was important, but what sin was didn’t seem as clear. I would focus on those big Ten Commandments and what I knew of them. In my mind I would go through them with God and say, “I didn’t kill, or steal, adultery was off the list (since I was 10 years old), I didn’t take your name in vain or even cuss, I don’t have any little golden statues to worship and I did what my parents asked me to today.”
It’s interesting, these conversations with God are still so clear in my mind and memory. I can even picture myself in my bedroom with pink walls struggling with this part of my prayer time as a child. As I’ve grown older and spent more and more time in the Word of God, I no longer have this problem. I’m able to write a daily list of all things I need to confess, and actions I should have taken that I felt like the Holy Spirit was prompting me to take, but didn’t. The words that were said that shouldn’t have been and words that should have been said, but weren’t. Thoughts that raced through my mind I would never want to be played out publicly. We have to go beyond the Ten Commandments when it comes to confession.
I don’t think the church always does a great job of explaining this to the body of Christ. They say we should confess, but often when we first begin our walk with God, the “what” we should confess, isn’t laid out so clearly. This proves a VERY important point. We can’t just count on the church and our pastor’s to guide and teach us. It’s imperative that we each open the Word of God and seek His truth, mercy, and love for ourselves.
And the good news is, that any sins, from stealing and killing to disobedient thoughts, are always forgiven by our Creator if we ask with a humble heart that seeks Him. His mercy and grace are never-ending and Satan’s hands are tied when we put all the unspoken sin out into God’s healing light and glory. Today, my prayer for all of us is that God will make known our sin so that we may confess it and live in the glorious freedom He offers.
Blog Art is provided by my friend and sister in Christ Polly Jo Green. She is an artist based in Cary, North Carolina. Visit her website at pollyjogreen.com.Her art ranges from doodle creations to mixed media pieces. In addition to commissioned original art, her art is available on notecards.