Consider the power of a secret lie. On one hand it’s the ultimate attempt to manipulate another. Weather that’s an attempt to manipulate or control a situation or an opinion or even an outcome, it’s still a manipulation. Have you ever tried to keep a lie secret? What power did it have over you? Often it eats at us and it’s not long before we realize that the cost of a secret lie outweighs the consequence we were trying to avoid, or at least we desire peace even if the consequence stinks.
Have you ever considered confession like this; If God already knows my sin then why do I need to confess? I wonder if that is even the right question. I wonder if we see confession as the gift that it is. Confession is the beginning of humbling oneself followed closely by repentance. Confession is the acknowledgement that we've done wrong from a wrong heart and we're in great need of God’s forgiveness and restoration. A restoration that was paid for so dearly with Jesus own blood. Confession cleanses us from the guilt we feel and we can hear the words of forgiveness from the God we've sinned against. Thank God he offers us confession and walks with us in repentance. It's the gift of freeing us from shame and guilt!
Key Verse: Psalm 32:5 “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."
Additional verses for meditation and study:
· John 19:15-19, 1 John 1:9, Psalm 103:12
Prayerful time in God’s word:
As you read this passage about Peter’s restoration, ask God to reveal to you your sin, and any relationships in your life that need restoration confession and forgiveness.
Read: John 21:15-19 (for important context read John 13:31-38, 18:15-18, 18:25-27)
· In John 21:15-19; Why do you think Jesus asks Peter if he loves him three times? Why does Peter need to tell Jesus he loves him three times?
· Is there a secret shame in your life that you need to confess? Ask God to reveal it to you?
· What is revealed in this passage about the nature and character of Jesus? What do you think he has to say to you about your sin and shame?
Special Prayer discipline:
This week focus on confession each and every day. Ask God to reveal to you your sins and be specific, name them before him as they come to your attention and ask for his forgiveness and help with any repentance that is needed.
Here’s an Idea: You guessed it! The key verse would make an excellent passage to memorize. After each sin named and confessed this week repeat the following prayer “Thank you Jesus for dying for me, I don’t deserve your forgiveness but I’m so grateful for it. Thank you for seeing me as your beloved son / daughter. Help me love you as much as you love me.”