Preparing for Confession

Originally published Thursday, 21 June 2018.

It took about a half hour, but I wonder if I’m not done yet. Searching my heart. Writing down the things never confessed. Preparing to share them with a friend. There is more, I’m sure. So I will return to the list. Ask God to search my heart again. Show me what I hide from myself, and from others–what shame, what sin. I trust what He brings to my mind and invites me to take to the foot of the cross.

“Make this your common practice: Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you can live together whole and healed” (James 16, MSG).

Confessing my sins to a friend is not going to be easy–or fun. But I know it will be good. It will be a step toward owning who I am without God. It will be saying yes to freedom. It will be letting Jesus love me, knowing I am forgiven.

What I write down has a sting. I have heard a person tell me this–that confession, true confession, should have a sting to it. I write down sins, things I have done, with specificity. And I aim for no blame. I need to own each thing I have done. Blaming, charging another person for something I have done, separates me from owning my own sin. It prevents me from even seeing it. And it makes me a victim in my own life.

Brene Brown explains how “blame is the discharging of discomfort and pain. It has an inverse relationship with accountability. Accountability by definition is a vulnerable process.” And, with my prepared confession, that’s what I am trying to move toward. Accountability and vulnerability. I am hoping that in my confessing to a friend, I will be rejecting shame and the impulse to hide my sin–from myself, and from God. I will be standing naked, taking my sin to the foot of the cross. And letting Jesus love me in the middle of the mess.

I know that Jesus’ death–the power and love of the Cross–destroys sin once and for all. But I need to take this step to help my heart believe it.

This is the second post in a series on seeking healing for self-condemnation. Subscribe to join me. I can surely use the company, friend.

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