The great reformer and theologian Martin Luther once said, “There is no better mirror in which to see your need than the 10 Commandments. “ We hear the phrase ‘confession is good for the soul’, but sometimes that is hard to do or we resist it. Confession is part of our own self examination, a look inward at who we are and what we have done. There are many ways confession can happen. In corporate worship we pray prayers of confession often. In today’s spiritual practice we look at our personal sin- what we have done and what we have left undone. In prayer WITH a welcoming God, we share them, we ask for God’s presence and forgiveness. Trust and repentance means we lay ourselves open with an honest desire to let God’s love and grace forgive us and move us on. In our self examination and confession we admit to God our sins, where we blame or rationalize and we share our denials and obsessions. We speak with God seeking grace to change our behavior and asking Him to shine a light into dark places where we don’t always want to look. Psalm 51 is a great one to read slowly and carefully related to this practice.
Spiritual Practice: Confession
Scriptures: Psalm 139:23-24; Psalm 32:1-2; James 5:16; John 3:16
Practice Includes: We admit to God our propensity to deny or blame and rationalize; We ask forgiveness and help to replace sinful habits with healthy one; We confess our sins and in honesty repentance seek to receive the grace of forgiveness and change;
Some potential fruits of this practice: Being transformed in Christlikeness and spending time with Jesus, the one who went to the cross for the forgiveness of our sins; replacing sinful habits with healthy ones; receiving forgiveness; admitting to God who we are and who we are not- and asking for help to grow deeper in relationship with Him
A few questions to ponder about the practice: When you confess your sins do you generalize, “forgive all my sins” or do you specifically name them one by one with God? What is the advantage of naming your sins?; What does the lack of specific confession do to your self awareness.; What is it like for you to offer to others and receive forgiveness? Which of your sins hurt those closest to you?; what does true forgiveness feel like?