Today's Guest Post is from my very own cousin, Beth! She just returned to the United States after spending 3 months in South Africa, and had been living in São Paulo, Brazil since 2005.
Beth is beautiful inside and out. She is honestly a third sister to me. I'm so happy for you to get to meet her and read what she's written...
You know when you ask God to reveal things in your life that aren’t pleasing to Him?
I’ve realized over the past several months that He is always faithful to reveal if our ears and hearts are open. We must then be faithful in responding. When sin, habits or attitudes are revealed to us they are brought to the light. We can choose to stifle them and keep them between us and God or we can throw even more light on them by sharing with others. Does that terrify you a little? I think so many of us live in fear of being discovered. What if that person knew this about me or what if I react this way in front of my friends? How would this affect their perception of me?
Here is a simple truth: confessing our sins to others is something the scriptures tell us to do for our own good.
Therefore, confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. -James 5:16
Through communion and prayer, we are healed!
And a bit earlier in Chapter 1 it says,
Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.
So I’ll go first…
A few months ago God began to bring to my attention ways that I had sinned against people, wrongs I had committed and forgotten. The regularity and speed at which He brought to light things from years past was astonishing and painful. So after several agonizing days spent arguing with God and justifying myself to Him, I relented.
Thus began the process of making things right, of confessing and apologizing to the actual people I had sinned against in some cases, in other cases simply sharing with friends the specifics of the areas I was struggling in and asking for them to pray for me and keep me accountable.
One of the biggest things was a fear of commitment. Driving with a friend one day, God spoke clearly to my heart. I was wary of trusting other people by committing to them in small things and terrified of risking myself in big commitments. Once I realized this was an issue, so many other things began to make sense. Why it was hard for me to commit to a day when asked to meet someone for coffee, why the thought of getting married had always terrified me. I went to some of those closest to me and asked them if they had noticed my commitment phobia and many of them had! Rather than being humiliated or embarrassed, I was so excited to have confirmation that I had in fact heard God on this and that it was something He wanted to break and work out in me.
Here comes the best part: confession brings beautiful, laughing out loud, bubbling up inside JOY. And the knowledge that no one has anything on you, every area of your life is in the light for all to see and you are no longer living in the dark. We have been rescued from darkness by the light of the Son and now we continue to walk in the light of His freedom.
Have you ever experienced the freedom that comes from confessing to others?