“Planting Lamp Posts in Dark Places”
CONFESS TO THOSE AFFECTED for harm done and seek to make amends.
“I have not represented God well in your presence. [Describe] You have been hurt by my un-God-like actions, attitudes, and beliefs. [List] My goal in life is to make God’s character of love known. That starts with this request for forgiveness. I value our relationship more than my pride. I am currently working on submitting my life to God’s control and understand if you need time to consider my request for forgiveness.”
Memorize: I John 1:6-10 (ESV), “If we say, we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sin, he is faithful and just to forgive our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” As you memorize this passage reflect upon these key points:
- “If we say” – Part of your confession needs to acknowledge that verses six and eight were true of you.
- “Walk in the light” – True confession is a lifestyle and not an event; not just something to “get it over with.”
- “Deceive ourselves” – You should begin to see how you deceived yourself and why it’s important to finish the study.
- “Faithful and just to forgive” – Confession to others does not add to your forgiveness, but it is a fruit of repentance.
- “Make [God] a liar” – Unconfessed sin makes life confusing and God’s Word seem false to those who love you.
“Making oneself transparent to another person is one of the difficult things that must be done. A man may institute all of the other steps outlined in this book into his life, but if he hedges on this one, all other efforts might prove to have been in vain (p. 63).” Steve Gallagher in At the Altar of Sexual Idolatry
“I hadn’t asked her before bringing this sin into our home. If she was going to live with the consequences of it, then she had the right to determine what she needed to know. If we had any chance of rebuilding this marriage, there was no more room for lies or half-truths. In our groups, we answer more questions related to talking during adultery recovery than any other subject. We might have thought trust or forgiveness or even sex would come up most often, but, in reality, conversation is the bridge that can deliver trust, forgiveness, and sex (p. 148).” Gary & Mona Shriver in Unfaithful
“Confession includes two important aspects: (1) Confession brings secrets to the light of day so we drain them of their power… (2) Confession allows God and a caring person to see our ugliness and still love us… It is usually not healthy to make our wives our only accountability partners or our primary confessors (p. 339).” Doug Rosenau in A Celebration of Sex
“I have heard people tell me many times that they do not have anyone to confess to. What they were really saying is that they were not desperate enough to seek out someone that might be able to assist them (p. 75-76).” Steve Gallagher in At the Altar of Sexual Idolatry
“Building real relationships of love with real people is crucial to the transformation of your imagination. You have spent way too much time in your private fantasy world. A world of honest, constructive relationships await (p. 24)… The Bible is full of stories about sexual sin, and they are told in a way that leaves us without illusions, but is never arousing or morbid (p. 27).” David Powlison in Sexual Addiction