The Power of Confession

Thank you Kelly Balarie for today’s message.

When he got in the car, he kept his head down, looked away, and muttered some words. Not hearing him outright, I said, “Son, what is it?”

He muttered, “I made a mistake. I looked at someone’s paperwork at school and copied their answer. I didn’t tell my teacher, but I told God ‘I’m sorry’. I will never do it again.”

I conveyed to him that he did right thing by confessing to God and deciding to change. God forgives. God keeps no records of wrongs (1 Corinthians 13:5). Our sins are cast into the depths of the sea (Micah 7:19).

“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, ESV)

Jesus takes away the burden of sin, when – through confession – we allow him to do so.

But, later that night (and I mean way-late), I felt a finger-poke in my side.

There he was, standing there, fretting, and worried. He cried, “Mommy, I have to text my teacher now. I feel so guilty. I want this off of my back.”

And, he did. The next morning, he wrote her a text essentially saying he was sorry. That he didn’t want to carry this anymore. That he needs to feel better.

And, after he pressed send, I was amazed. The transformation was huge. He went from being down and dejected to dancing and jubilant. He jumped around the house rejoicing and full of new life.

This is a picture of repentance. When we let go of the guilt, we carry to receive the blessing of the cross that Jesus carried – we always find new life.

Part of the process is forgiving our self. Have you forgiven yourself for the wrongs, the guilt, or the burdens that weigh you down? If Jesus forgave you, can’t you forgive yourself too? If Jesus paid the ultimate price, hasn’t he fully purchased all your mistakes?

If you’ve confessed your sins to God, but still don’t feel life, you might consider doing these three things:

1. Confessing to any other people involved, as God leads you.

2. Letting go internally. This means you release the guilt, shame and burdens to Jesus from within you and receive his gift of forgiveness, once and for all.

3. Choosing not to dwell any more on what issue God has already set you free from.

I’ll never forget the look on my son’s face after he got that burden “off his back.” We can do the same today. Freedom is right on the other side of asking for and receiving forgiveness.

Have a blessed day!

Seeing Yourself as God Sees You

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Thank you Sharon Jaynes for today’s message:

For many years after I became a Christian, I operated under a false sense of who I really was. I had no idea the change that occurred in me the moment I accepted Christ. I did not see myself as God saw me. I had a grid system or a sieve of inferiority, insecurity, and inadequacy over my mind. When I processed information about my world and about myself, it had to first filter through that negative grid system.

If someone canceled a lunch date, I interpreted that as “she doesn’t like me.” If I didn’t get invited to an event, I interpreted that as “I’m not worthy.” If my husband didn’t give me enough attention, I interpreted that as “he doesn’t really care about me.” If someone asked me to take on a project, I immediately thought, “I’m not capable.” My interpretation of events and other’s actions were distorted by the devil’s lies.

It was not until my thirties that I began to realize that how God saw me and how I saw myself were very different. Like a hungry child, I began to research and write down verses about who I really was in Christ–my true identity as a child of God. I learned that I was a child of God (John 1:12), chosen and dearly loved (John 15:16), a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17), a joint heir with Jesus (Romans 8:14), a saint (Ephesians 1:1), righteous and holy (Ephesians 4:24), dearly loved (Colossians 3:12), completely forgiven (1 John 1:9), totally free (John 8:36), and uniquely designed (Psalm 139:14).

I also learned that it was Satan who held that negative grid system in place, and it was up to me to demolish his stronghold by the power of the Holy Spirit.

I came to a crossroads in my spiritual journey. I could continue believing the lies or I could begin believing the truth. Jesus said, “You will know the truth and the truth will set you free” (John 8:32). I decided to believe the truth. It was difficult and didn’t feel comfortable at first. Like the lame man who regained the movement of his legs, or the blind man who received his sight, I had to adjust to my new belief system.

Oh my friend, God has so much planned for you to do and to be, but if you are operating with a false sense of who you really are, you may be paralyzed.

On Jesus’ first day of public ministry, He walked down to the river and was baptized by His cousin John. As Jesus came out of the water, a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with You I am well pleased” (Luke 3:22). God says the same thing to you…and to me.

“You are my child…whom I love…with you I am well pleased.”

This devotion is very personal for me. I’ve told you some of my deepest struggles. But I want you to examine your own thought life. Do you believe lies about yourself or do you believe the truth?

Here’s my challenge to you at the start of this New Year: Start believing that you are who God says you are. That truth will set you free!

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!