Lent Reading: Psalm 32
Do you know the power of confessing your sin? The fifth step of Alcoholics Anonymous describes confession well: “Admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.”
We have blockers to confession. Our self-deceit, our pride, fear of others, fear of consequences, our independence, privacy. Can you name your own barriers? It is humiliating to admit when we get it wrong. If we do, we may minimise. “I regret you feel this way…”, “I am sorry…but.” It takes courage to describe “the exact nature of our wrongs.”
Psalm 32 says when we fail to own our sin, there remains a dreadful weight on our soul. The Psalmist has an ache in his bones (v3), a groaning all day long. He can feel the weight of God’s judgement and displeasure on him (v4). What can relieve him of this burden? The blessing of forgiveness (v1).
Forgiveness comes to those who confess, fully, without reservation. God forgives the one who acknowledges their sin (v5) and does not try to cover it up with deceits (v2), however small. Forgiveness brings real release from private shame to public rejoicing. Now forgiven, the Psalmist sings of his sin, confession, and new liberty. The Psalmists teaches others the good news of how to be forgiven. He teaches others to sing these ‘songs of deliverance’ (v7). His life has gone from very small, locked in his world of sin, to spacious, bringing blessing and release to others.
This is the release Jesus brings to our life when we confess. The Apostle John writes “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). Why not take time to examine your heart, mind, and soul. Do you have anything to confess?