Saturday, May 31, 2008

Confession (day two)

James 5:16 says “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.” Does the Bible really mean that we should let our real self be known to another person—even the crud and mistakes and sin?

Secrets can hold a lot of power, but through confession that power can be broken. Please be wise in choosing a real person to whom you confess your sins. Please keep in step with God’s Spirit and take the risk with the right person.

Looking for a first step? Try using this on-line confession that includes scripture to help you walk through confessing sin:

The Confessor (http://www.theconfessor.co.uk)

A next step could be keeping a journal that tracks your comments to God and your impressions of God’s responses. The journal could have much more than only confession written inside. But taking the time each day to jot down where you are can be a beneficial pattern to help connect you with God.

Another step could be finding an accountability partner for a limited or extended time. This helps us move beyond being known only to cyber-people. Instead of feeding the idea that we're being "known" when really we're still being anonymous, we choose to risk with a real person. Julie Davis writes that “confessing to a person who can see you and respond to you--although difficult--will generally bring real healing and release from bondage.”

What do you think the Bible teaches? How have you acted out the truth of James 5:16? Write us, here, at the blog.

3 comments:

Julie said...

I think a lot of times when I read James 5:16, I don't hear what is really there. The verse says that we confess "so that you may be HEALED." But I think that I often operate as if the verse said to confess "so that you may be SHAMED." My personal experience agrees with the verse as written: I have found amazing release from compulsive thinking and behavior when I come clean with a trustworthy person about what's really going on. Yet I still find it hard to take that first step to be vulnerable with another person because I forget that God's purpose in confession is healing, not shame.

Robert said...

I agree with Julie. Confessing sinful things that you have done is not something I want to do. James is saying,I believe however, confess your sins to one another so that you may be forgiven, which we need to do to show we are not willing to hide our sins, and pray for one another which shows we have faith. Without these things being done, one might question our true motives and whether we trust in God to "heal". We need to remember also that in sharing our confession with other believers, or in hearing the confession of other believers, no where is it said that we are to judge, or even to comment. It says pray to God for each other. I further believe that this verse demonstrates why it is important to have someone of faith that you can walk and talk with.

Rose said...

James knew from his own personal experiences that confession heals are spirits and therefore heals are minds. When I recognized that I have committed a sin and I did not honor God with what I did~my mind will replay the sin over and over again. I always think I should have known better because I am a Christian. To confess my sins to Jesus is such a relief. He alone understands where I went wrong and will lead me in the right direction to correct my sin if I can. Jesus can take all that overwhelming guilt and shame away if we confess it all to Him. He does heal our minds as well as our spirits and gives us hope that we won't make that same mistake again in the future. Blessings, Rose