Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – August 13, 2019
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9
When I was in my late twenties, I lived in Houston, Texas where I was an elementary school teacher. During Sunday morning church service one week, I noticed an announcement in the bulletin for a special Wednesday evening event called a Solemn Assembly. I wasn’t sure what it was about, but I liked attending special events at my church, so I decided to go.
When I arrived, I was handed a small booklet at the door, then I found my seat in the sanctuary and waited for the event to start.
One of our church leaders stood, welcomed everyone and introduced us to another man, a special guest, who said he would help us overcome obstacles in our lives. (Sounds great to me!) He said he would be leading us through the booklet we had received at the door and that many people would be released from bondages (Awesome!). He said many others would overcome unforgiveness (Fantastic!). And, he said we would leave feeling renewed, refreshed, and restored. (Can I get an “Amen!”)
But then, the man announced how this would all happen: through confession. (Really?!) That didn’t sound exciting—or fun.
For over 90 minutes, the man read one scripture after another on particular sins with each page of the booklet being dedicated to one sin. One page at a time, he described sins in detail, read their corresponding scriptures, then invited everyone in the congregation to kneel, seek their hearts, and quietly confess to the Lord if needed and ask for forgiveness.
We asked God to forgive us for gossiping, slander, stealing, lying, adultery, and other sins. You name it, we addressed it.
In those quiet moments with my head bowed, I became acutely aware of how filthy my heart was. Sins that I had overlooked became obvious. But even though I became aware of my sin, I became equally aware of God’s goodness, love, care, kindness, and mercy. I cried tears of cleansing as the man reminded us of the Lord’s faithfulness and when I stood to leave, I felt lighter. Weight had been lifted. I knew I was loved even though I had often dishonored and disobeyed the Lord through my attitudes and actions.
So often, confession gets a bad rap. After all, who wants to be reminded of all the horrible things they have done, said, or thought? But there’s good news: when confession is coupled with the truth that God loves us in spite of our sin, and that He is waiting with open arms when we confess to Him, refreshing comes.
Confession can be liberating, cleansing, and life giving. And, when we know that our confession is being gently received by our tender, Sacrificial Savior, it’s easier to say, “God, I’ve really blown it.”
I invite you to talk with the Lord today and ask Him to reveal your sins to you. Then, when He has placed a loving finger on a heart attitude or action, ask for forgiveness, do what you need to do to right your wrong, then thank the Lord for His loving reconciliation. Confession, when coupled with receiving forgiveness is something to be celebrated!
“Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord.” And you forgave the guilt of my sin” (Psalm 32:5).
Lord, thank you that you are always waiting with open arms to receive me when I confess my sins to you. You are not waiting to punish and hurt me for wrong. You want to help me walk your good and safe path. Please always give me the courage to come to you to confess. Amen.
Ask the Lord to reveal your sin to you, then ask for forgiveness and receive His love.
Confession of sin can be liberating, cleansing and life giving. #WisdomHunters #confession #Jesus
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