1. Does your confession tend to be along the lines of “Forgive my sins, dear Lord” rather than specifically naming your sins one by one before the face of God?
  2. What experiences have affected your ability to give and receive forgiveness? Talk to God about what this means.
  3. When have you tasted the joy of forgiveness?
  4. What is it like for you to confess your sins before a friend or mentor/minister?
  5. Which of your sins hurts those closest to you?
Jesus, the only Son of God, died a violent, unspeakable death so we could know what freedom from sin tastes like. Jesus laid his power down, suffered and became sin so that we would not be condemned. Every time we confess how we have missed the mark of God’s love and truth, we open ourselves up to the mending work of the cross. Jesus’ wounds hold true life-changing power. This is the shocking reality that confession can open up to us. Through confession and forgiveness, we live into the truth of being God’s new creature! The old is gone. The new has come.
Spiritual Disciplines Handbook. A. Calhoun
‘There is no better mirror in which to see your need than the Ten Commandments. ”—Martin Luther
Desire to surrender my weaknesses and faults to the forgiving love of Christ and intentionally desire and embrace practices that lead to transformation.
Self-examination is a process whereby the Holy Spirit opens my heart to what is true about me. This is not the same thing as a neurotic shame-inducing inventory. Instead, it is a way of opening myself to God within the safety of his love so I can authentically seek transformation. Confession embraces Christ’s gift of forgiveness and restoration while setting us on the path to renewal and change.
“Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.
See if there is any offensive way in me and lead me in the way everlasting.”
(Psalm 139:23-24)
“Blessed is he whose transgressions are forgIven, whose sins are covered.
Blessed is the man
whose sin the LORD does not count against him
and in whose spirit is no deceit.” (Psalm 32:1-2)
“Therefore, confess your sins to each other and pray for each other
so that you may be healed.” (James 5:16)
  • Admitting to God the natural propensity to rationalize, deny, blame and self-obsess
  • Examining the “sin network” in your life as evidenced in presumptuous sins, besetting weaknesses, self-centered habits and broken relationships.
  • Replacing sinful habits with healthy ones
  • Seeking God’s grace to change
  • Confessing sins by examining your life in light of
  1. The seven deadly sins,
  2. The TenCommandments,
  3. Prayers of confession found in prayer books or Scripture (Psalm 51),
  4. A life confession, journaling confessions and confessions made to others.
  • Keeping company with Jesus as he helps you with how much or how little you change
  • Being transformed into Christlikeness
  • Thinking of yourself with sober judgment, awareness of your blind spots
  • Gaining insight into your temptations and God’s work in your life
  • Having compassion toward others in their faults
  • Seeing yourself as God’s loved and forgiven child no matter what you have done
  • Living in thankfulness for God’s work in your life
  • Savoring the gift of salvation
Spiritual Disciplines Handbook, A. Calhoun