Summary: confessing our sins to God
When we have done something wrong it fester insides, gnawing away at our subconscious. It keeps us awake, makes us irritable, cross and quick tempered. It depresses us and grinds at self confidence. The guilt eats at us and we begin to get desperate to rid ourselves of it. So we hide it, pretend it didn’t happen or blame someone or something else for our transgressions. Like the little four year old girl caught by her Mom standing on a stool in the kitchen eating cookies saying, “Mom, it wasn’t my fault, honest! I climbed up on that stool because I just wanted to smell the cookies and my tooth got caught in one of them.”
Parents – your child comes home from school with a bad grade on a paper. And what do they say “It was that teacher’s fault! He didn’t clearly explain to us how to do that!” Something happens and a person gets angry, loses control and what do they say, “I was minding my own business. I wasn’t going to say a word, but they just went on and on and finally I just lost it and I sure put them in their place! It was their fault. They made me lose it! Serves them right!
Dave Stone writes, “We [have] become more concerned with concealing, than confessing [sin].”Rick Kallstroms says, “There is an epidemic in our society today of people failing to take responsibility for their own actions even when they have been caught doing it in front of God. And this, my friends, is the way it has always been since the days of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. As soon as Adam and Eve sinned they heard the sound of God walking in the garden, what did they do? They ran off and they hid. Like, God couldn’t have found them. So, God called out to Adam, “where are you?” Adam answered from behind the fig tree, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked.” God said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?” And what was Adam’s answer, “it wasn’t my fault that woman that YOU put here with me God – SHE gave me some fruit from the tree and I ate it.” And what was Eve’s excuse, “Well, uhm, it was that snake fault – yeah, that’s it, The Devil made me do it.”
We all know confession is good for the soul. They say a new phone number in Las Vegas Nevada is being bombarded by calls. It is the ”Connection Confession” line where people can call and confess their sins to phone recording for a mere $9 a call and for a little extra you can listen to other’s people’s sins. Every year Americans spend billions of dollars confessing to psychiatrists. We confess to our doctors, bartenders, family members and friends all in the hope that we will be freed from the of guilt of our sins. But real confession, confession to God, we avoid. It sounds too catholic for us protestansts, besides deep down we are really good people and the longer we are Christians the easier it seems to forget that we too are sinners in need of forgiveness. We pray the great prayer of confession at conversion and we being to think that it covers all our sins in the past, present, and future. Or, as Richard Foster says in Celebration of Discipline, "We come to feel that everyone else [in church] has advanced so far into holiness that we are isolated and alone in our sin. We could not bear to reveal our failures and shortcomings to others. We imagine that we are the only ones who have not stepped onto the high road to heaven. Therefore we hide ourselves from one another and live in veiled lies and hypocrisy.”
1 John 1:8 says, if we say we are not sinners we are lying, we are only fooling ourselves, cause I guarantee you if I asked your brother or sister, your spouse, your fellow worker, - it would kind of be like the four preachers who got together and decided they need to practice the discipline of confessing to one another. And so the first preacher look at the other three and dip his head and confessed to cheating on his expense report. The second preacher confessed to having inappropriate thoughts about the lady in the choir on the third row. The third minister spoke of his addiction to drink and confessed that he had more than once had too much. The Fourth sat quietly seemingly wrestling with what to say. The others encouraged him to confess. Finally he told them he had nothing to say. They challenged him surely he had a sin he needed to ask for forgiveness from. To which he replied sure he did but he wasn’t confessing nothing today because his sin was gossip and what he had just learned was too good to keep quiet about. It’s so much easier to examine and identify someone else sins then to examine our own life and see our sins.