CONFESSION

CHRISTLIKENESS IS NOT ME IMITATING BUT THE SPIRIT IMPLANTING

…FATHER, my previous understanding of the term “Christlikeness” has misled me. I thought I would become Christlike by doing more and more good deeds like CHRIST did. FATHER, it is my desire to walk by the SPIRIT, not imitate CHRIST by externally acting out my perception of His good works.

But, Christlikeness is not me imitating CHRIST. Instead, Christlikeness is the impartation of the holy qualities of CHRIST in me (ref#7, July 23rd). These “holy qualities” are Your qualities, FATHER, brought to me by the Person of the SPIRIT.

The HOLY SPIRIT transfigured the Son of Man, CHRIST, and He transfigures me. It is an internal change in me. Bit by bit—from one degree of glory to another—my life improves as You, FATHER, enter more and more into my life (2 Cor 3:18).

The length to which I’m willing to be molded into Your image is the length to which the SPIRIT will help me. As long as I keep calling out for His blessing and help, the SPIRIT has fully committed Himself to respond (ref#78, p38).

“Only when we are full of the Spirit do we feel the need for God everywhere we turn” Jim Cymbala (ref#78, p58).

CONFESSION

REFUTING STRONGHOLDS IN MY MIND

“…the weapons of our warfare are not physical…but they are mighty before God for the overthrow and destruction of strongholds,…we] refute arguments and theories and reasonings and every proud and lofty thing that sets itself up against the [true] knowledge of God;…” (2 Cor 10:4-5 AMP).

FATHER, I desire to sit before You for the purpose of identifying my strongholds. A stronghold is a fortified place. In my mind I keep certain thoughts at the ready to be quickly acted upon because I can trust them to get me through a particular type of situation.

These thoughts, turned to action, have worked for me. They have kept me independent. That’s why I consider them a stronghold and keep them fortified. More than anything I don’t want to abandon them for other thoughts that might not work.

But, FATHER, I know that these stronghold thoughts set themselves against the true knowledge of You for they are my thoughts, doing life my way, not Your way.  They require no faith or resting on You.  I do desire You transform me inwardly by a complete change of my mind (Rom 12:2) so I can take everyone of these stronghold thoughts and make them a prisoner capturing them and bringing them into obedience to CHRIST (2 Cor 10:5).

By faith I know that I can do this with Your help. My part in this process is to be willing to give strongholds up.

Stronghold thoughts that float into my mind when I’m idle, like prideful ones that serve to build up my ego, I can refute by willfully thinking of something else. So, FATHER, I ask You to call to my attention these stronghold thoughts so I can destroy them by neglect.

Thoughts though, put into actions that get me through frightening phobias, I’m not so willing to give up. But, by obtaining Your strength through faith I can also eliminate these self-preserving, strongholds. You give me the ability to do it when I willfully turn the thoughts toward You, for when my attention is on You I cannot initiate my self-preserving defenses. For it is impossible for two opposing thoughts to exist together.

FATHER, I desire to think upon You. You are true, worthy of reverence, honorable and just. You are pure, lovely and lovable, kind and gracious. You are excellent and worthy of praise ( Phil 4:8). With thoughts on You I lose the desire to think about my self-preservation and comfort at all. Strongholds vanish!

CONFESSION

OBEDIENCE

 “His timing is perfect, His will is our hiding place. Lord Jesus keep me in Your will.  Don’t let me go mad by poking about outside it” Corrie TenBoom (ref#84, p218).

FATHER, being obedient to You sounds simple enough, but how do I know it is You giving the orders instead of my flesh desiring to be spiritual? Can I not hear the same words from both You and my flesh?

No prerequisite is required for fleshly desires to enter my head. They are stand-alone commands rising from my depraved nature. They masquerade as important spiritual ideas appealing to my sense of logic. They beg to be put into action.

“Carnal pleasure, worldly profit and honour, the things of sense and time, are the things of the flesh…The favour of God, the welfare of the soul, the concerns of eternity, are the things of the Spirit” Matthew Henry’s Commentary on the Whole Bible (ref#18, [Rom 8:5]).

FATHER, draw me into submission. Make me wait on You to receive Your revelation in my intuition otherwise my flesh will assert itself (ref#101, p43). If I sense I’m being the boss over any spiritual project, I can be sure it is my flesh directing me. You FATHER, do not delegate authority over the control of Your work (ref#101, p42).

“Despite a great revival in Samaria, Philip was not responsible for the follow-up labor of strengthening. He must leave immediately for the desert in order that a “heathen” eunuch might be saved….All acts are in the hands of the Spirit; believers simply obey. Had it been left to human thoughts and wishes, many places which ought to be visited would not have been, and many others would have been visited which ought not to be. These experiences from Acts inescapably tell us that we too must follow the guidance of God’s Spirit in our intuition and not follow our thoughts, reasons or wishes” Watchman Nee (ref#101, p 42-43).

“Jesus takes us over for His enterprises, His building schemes entirely, and no soul has any right to claim where he shall be put” Oswald Chambers (ref#7, May 7th).

CONFESSION

A MEASURE OF DILIGENCE IS PLACED UPON ME

…FATHER, I live in unbroken fellowship with You in CHRIST JESUS (Rom 6:11). Your divine power has granted me life and godliness and I am a sharer of Your divine nature (2 Pet 1:3-4).

With such bestowment a measure of diligence is placed upon me to keep myself from falling away. I am not to willfully run into temptation, or expose myself to the power of the enemy (ref#61, Oct 4th). I must put my energies into keeping myself holy by letting CHRIST keep me holy.

You have chosen me for salvation. That is the end. But the means to that end is sanctification. Sanctification is accomplished by the operation of the Holy Spirit and by faith on my part; “faith and holiness must be joined together” Matthew Henry’s Commentary on the Whole Bible (ref#18, [2 Thes 2:13]).

So You, FATHER, throw a measure of responsibility upon me. You charge me to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live a self-controlled, upright, and godly life (Titus 2:12).

Since I was bought with a price, it becomes my desire to glorify You in my body (1 Cor 6:19-20). You, FATHER, through CHRIST has caused me to be born again to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven (1 Pet 1:3-4).

Let that cheering prospect keep me from slothfulness, unwatchful-ness, and prayerlessness. Encourage me FATHER, to work out my own salvation cheerfully by leaning entirely on You (Phil 2:12).

CONFESSION

UNCONSCIOUS USEFULNESS

…FATHER, caution me against my human nature that is so set on being consistent and useful to You. As long as I’m choosing the way to glorify You, You are not glorified. Governing my activities is a sure indication that I am not pleasing You (ref#7, May 18th).

I know that love is not premeditated but spontaneous. “We do not set the statements of Jesus in front of us as a standard; but when His Spirit is having His way with us, we live according to His standard without knowing it” Oswald Chambers (ref#7, April 30th).

“If we try to prove to God how much we love Him, it is a sure sign that we do not love Him. The evidence of our love for Him is the absolute spontaneity of our love…” Oswald Chambers (ref#7, April 30th).

FATHER, I pray for the spontaneity loving You brings. No wonder CHRIST gave over half of His example prayer (the Lord’s Prayer) to adoration and thanks (Matt 6:9-13) to You; He was reacting to Your love.

CONFESSION

NOT SUCCESS BUT FAITHFULNESS

…FATHER, keep me from the desire for success. In my base nature I want You to come and revive my church, my town, my country. I want everybody to witness Your power so I can be proud of Your accomplishments—so everyone can see how wise I am to follow You. I want You to prove Who You are and what You have done for me (ref#83, p118).

But JESUS did not turn the world upside down in a great show of power. When He was on earth after performing a miracle he would not let the news be spread (Matt 9:30). He didn’t succumb to the devil’s temptation to make Him a household word (Matt 4:6). He was not interested in being admired by men.

Move me FATHER, to settle on CHRIST as my example to follow: “The one dominate note in His life was to do His Father’s will. His way was not the way of wisdom or of success, but the way of faithfulness” Oswald Chambers (ref#83, p120).

CONFESSION

LIVING IN THE SPIRIT LONGER

…FATHER, the presence of the SPIRIT instantly causes a conflict in me. His presence is so satisfying I am tempted to seek Him simply for the feelings His closeness creates. He comes, though, to bring me sanctification through my obedience to His leading. The conflict is, do I obey the SPIRIT or just enjoy His presence?

I know from experience that as soon as I focus on the happiness the SPIRIT brings, He leaves. Haven’t revivals through the ages been short-lived because men have sought SPIRIT-filled joy instead of obedience? Hasn’t the enemy freely imitated the SPIRIT because men have longed for only the blessings the SPIRIT brings?

This life with the SPIRIT is not about happiness although He enables me to experience unimaginable joy. It is about submission—letting You, FATHER, do as You please. The SPIRIT provides Your sanctification for me—He provides what is needed for my holiness; I simply must follow Him.

I pray for the SPIRIT to conquer my life. Send out Your SPIRIT, FATHER, to take me to Your habitation—the place where Your glory dwells (Ps 26:8).

CONFESSION

VAIN ILLUSIONS

“…the way in which we repent to God or apologize to someone show that we have not truly judged ourselves. We betray the fact that we feel the wrong is only an unfortunate slip, and that we have on this occasion acted out of character with our true selves. What deception” Roy and Revel Hession (ref#100, p77)!

FATHER, I do not have the ability to take honest stock of myself. You say my heart is desperately wicked (Jer 17:9) but it doesn’t seem that bad to me. I live in the realm of illusion just as the Pharisee in the temple (Luke 18:10-14).

“The Pharisee who thanked God that he was not as other men were, honestly thought he was telling the truth. He was, however, just as covetous, unjust, and adulterous as anybody else, but his own heart had deceived him” Roy and Revel Hession (ref#100, p50).

FATHER, I want to know the truth about myself. I am suffering from sin much more than I know. Shatter my vain illusion about myself:

“If the moment the Holy One took our place and bore our sins He was condemned by the Father and left derelict in the hour of His sufferings, what must our true condition be to occasion so severe an act of judgment! The Bible says He was made in ‘the likeness of sinful flesh’ (Rom 8:3), which means that He was there as an effigy of us. But if the moment He became that effigy, He had to cry, ‘My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?’ (Matt 27:46), what must God see us to be? It is plain that God was not forsaking the Son as the Son. He was forsaking the Son as us, whose likeness He was wearing” Roy and Revel Hession (ref#100, p52).

CONFESSION

GROWING TO HATE MY FLESH

…FATHER, many times You confronted Moses with impossible situations. And many times he felt as if it was his job to make the situation possible. One of those times was when the people asked for meat to eat (Num 11:4-6).

“Where am I to get meat to give to all this people?…I am not able to carry all this people alone; the burden is too heavy for me” (Num 11:13-14 ESV).

FATHER, You have put before me such impossible situations. And, like Moses, I easily forget that You do not demand I find solutions to those situations.

You, LORD, actually allow me to be defeated and fruitless in order that You may destroy my natural life containing my self-wisdom and abilities (ref#101, p84). In defeat You show me more of the sin and frailty of my flesh in order that I may be aroused to an increased indignation toward myself (ref#33, p91,92). With these situations You corrupt my confidence in my natural virtues (ref#7, Dec. 30th).

My natural life must not rule, You must rule in me (ref#7, Dec 28th). What I call strengths, You call weakness. When I trust my strengths and depend on them I make it impossible for Your will to be accomplished.

FATHER, You will not grant me increased strength to meet impossible situations. Guide me, instead, toward maintaining an affirmative attitude toward You and a negative response toward my flesh (ref#33, p 106). For, if I trust in my wits instead of You, I produce consequences for which You will hold me responsible (ref#7, Dec. 28th).

CONFESSION

MY RESPONSIBILITY IN SANCTIFICATION

…FATHER, I praise You for giving to me the weapons that can triumph over satan—precisely Your Son and the SPIRIT. Though they overcome, it is necessary that I be responsible.

You, FATHER, make me “holy in the sense of innocence.” My responsibility is to participate in making my character into a holy character by a series of moral choices (ref#7, Sept 8th). I am inclined to cater to my undisciplined nature and many times attribute my failures to satan’s influence when the problem is my unwillingness to restrain myself.

I must strengthen myself to not submit to actions that stem from my physical condition. Prejudices and moods are two such things that I must destroy by neglect (ref#7, May 20th, Sept 8th).

“Many of us prefer to stay at the threshold of the Christian life instead of going on to construct a soul in accordance with the new life God has put within” Oswald Chambers (ref#7, May 20th).

FATHER, I want to be responsible. With my will and the SPIRIT’s power I desire to refute arguments and theories and reasonings and every proud and lofty thing that sets itself up against Your true knowledge (2 Cor 10:5). For You know, FATHER, I’m in a fight all day long. Rouse me to reject comfort with its unwillingness to exercise the holy qualities You have placed in me.