CONFESSION

COVETOUSNESS

“…when the Holy Ghost convicts He…gives us the deep conviction that we are living in independence of God…we find all our virtues and goodness…has been based on a…boundless inheritance of covetousness Oswald Chambers (ref#8, March 31st).

“Never lay the flattering unction to your soul that because you are not covetous for money or worldly possessions, you are not covetous for anything. The fuss and distress of owning anything is the last remnant of the disposition of sin. Jesus Christ possessed nothing for Himself (see 2 Corinthians 8:9)” (ref#8, March 31st).

FATHER, today I submit in Your presence and willingly ask the SPIRIT to highlight the things in my life where I spend money and time on activities only for my entertainment and comfort. Point out my activities that are competitive right down to my efforts to make myself better than others. Show me my covetousness in my shopping habits. Help me distinguish between my needs and simply pleasing myself. Reveal the vast difference between Your provision of my basic needs and my pursuit of selfish wants. I am totally at fault for being rich. I am living a worldly life. And the way I spend my time and money separate me from You. Even if I multiply my prayers, You will not hear me (Jer 14:12).

LORD, I stand before You in rebellion,

full of covetousness—

wanting to keep my own life—

exerting myself to maintain my rule.

 

I’m not envious of the possessions of my neighbor;

but I’m greedy for comfort and peace.

I passionately guard my soft bed;

I lust after tasty food—clothes—shelter.

 

I jealously surround myself with friends—

striving to keep them happy with me.

‘Tis true, I begrudge others who find success,

and envy ones who are better than I.

CONFESSION

THE MESSAGE MUST BE PART OF ME

screen-shot-2017-01-02-at-3-17-25-pm“Christian work may be a means of evading the soul’s concentration on Jesus Christ” Oswald Chambers (ref#7, March 25th).

FATHER, I don’t want to be ambitious to win souls but to be ambitious to be accepted by You (ref#7, March 17th). I may be more of a hindrance to You than a help if my witness is just what CHRIST has done for me instead of presenting CHRIST from the vantage point of being His friend (ref#7, March 25th). Obedience is good but being the friend of the Bridegroom is more important.

Move me to maintain my relationship with CHRIST above all else, FATHER (ref#7, March 25th). No wonder “conquer” is a word used often in Scripture. It takes purposeful effort to develop a relationship with CHRIST. Obedience to witnessing can be accomplished too easily in my own strength and thus can’t even be classified as a battle conquered.

“The natural heart will do any amount of serving, but it takes the heart broken by conviction of sin, and baptized by the Holy Ghost, and crumpled into the purpose of God before the life becomes the sacrament of its message” Oswald Chambers (ref#7, March 10th).

CONFESSION

REVIVAL

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-11-53-02-am…FATHER, “Sin is the only thing that hinders the revival of His (CHRIST’s) church” Roy Hession (ref#97, p62) (parenthesis mine). Show me my sin.

“Revival is just the life of the Lord Jesus poured into human hearts” Roy Hession (ref#97, p21). CHRIST, pour Your life into me.

Revival “…simply means new life, in hearts where the spiritual life has ebbed…the life of Jesus filling us and flowing through us” Roy Hession (ref#97, p68). FATHER, I confess my spiritual life ebbs; just a night’s sleep depletes me. I want filled again and again and again with JESUS.

“The willingness of Jesus to be broken for us is the all-compelling motive in our being broken too” Roy Hession (ref#97, p23). I desire to be broken as JESUS was. Bring to me the life JESUS endured from the time of His arrest to His crucifixion.

“Brokenness, however is but the beginning of Revival, Revival itself is being absolutely filled to overflowing with the Holy Spirit. All we have to do is to present our empty, broken self and let Him fill and keep filled” Roy Hession (ref#97, p27). Here I am, empty and broken ready to be filled.

“It will mean no plans, no time, no money, no pleasure of our own. It will mean a constant yielding to those around us” Roy Hession (ref#97, 25). I desire to constantly yield to those around me.

CONFESSION

THOUGH I COMMIT EVIL, I MUST CONTINUE FOLLOWING THE LORD

screen-shot-2016-10-19-at-4-38-58-pm…FATHER, even though I am steeped in sin, there is no reason I should not continue to walk beside You. When the Israelites were steeped in sin—even sin that they knew full well was sin, and yet they continued in it—the prophet Samuel encouraged them with these words:

“…’Do not fear. You have committed all this evil, yet do not turn aside from following the LORD, but serve the LORD with all your heart.  For the LORD will not abandon His people on account of His great name…” (1 Sam 12:20,22 NASB).

Thank You LORD, for not abandoning me. You never think of abandoning me because, in so doing, it would dishonor Your name. It is only me, Your silly, prideful creature, who thinks You might abandon me because of my sin. You have dealt with sin; it is no longer an issue with You. But, it is with me.

For me, repentance for sin is necessary. It is a way to escape so iniquity shall not be my ruin. I am to tell the truth about my sin so a proper diagnosis can be achieved. Sin is all about reminding me who I am: a creature constantly needing His Creator.

Oh FATHER, hear my confession. Let me not slip into the bog of wallowing in my sin and spinning my feet trying to work at eradicating it. It’s not about me and my ugly sin. It’s about following You because of Your greatness. I desire quickly to climb back on the path to follow You.

“O Lord, forbid that I would be so foolish as to be a lover of wages more than a lover of underserved rewards. Make me feel the sweetness of being shown mercy. Work childlikeness deeply into my soul, and make me find my joy and my rest in Your free gift of grace” John Piper (ref#124, p61).

CONFESSION

WRATH

screen-shot-2016-10-14-at-2-46-17-pm“The Lord is a jealous and avenging God; the Lord is avenging and wrathful; the Lord takes vengeance on his adversaries and keeps wrath for his enemies. The Lord is slow to anger and great in power, and the Lord will by no means clear the guilty….” (Nah 1:2-3 ESV).

FATHER, I can think, act, and feel humble—actually fall on my knees before You, but if I’m not routinely pleading for JESUS to forgive my sins, I stand before You prideful, not humble and Your wrath is upon me. You cannot tolerate the pride of man (Prov 8:13).

You did not spare angels when they sinned, but committed them to chains to be kept until the judgment (2 Pet 2:4). You did not spare the ancient world, but preserved only Noah and seven others (2 Peter 2:5). You turned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes, condemning them to extinction making them as an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly (2 Peter 2:6).

I am always unholy, standing in the way of Your wrath. I am a city like Sodom if I do not continually grow in the grace and knowledge of my Lord, JESUS (2 Pet 3:18). “This knowledge is the ever-deepening experience of Christ and understanding of His truth” The Reformation Study Bible (ref#56, p1825, [2 Pet 3:18]).

FATHER, may I understand the seriousness of Your wrath. Instead of a city like Sodom, I must be like the city of Nineveh. Nineveh fasted and prayed and turned from evil so that You relented of the disaster that You said You would do (Jonah 3:7-10).

You say, “Vengeance is mine; I will repay;” You will judge people. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living GOD (Heb 10:30-31), for You are a consuming fire (Heb 12:29).

Please remind me often that I naturally stand in the way of Your wrath the moment I turn my head away from JESUS. I default to living my life using my own resources.  Sober me against that. You accept nothing but my spirit submitting to Your SPIRIT (Zech 4:6).

CONFESSION

THE BLOOD

Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 3.38.29 PMThe blood of the Lamb cleanses me from sin—not just the first time I come to Him. It is not a once-and-for-all cleansing but the blood of CHRIST continues to flow—continues to cleanse. It saves me all the days of my life.

It is satan’s ploy to draw me to CHRIST for initial repentance and then drive me out in the wilderness so that I use my natural resources to fight sin going forward. Surely the Galatians thought as I, “CHRIST has saved me, now I have to get my act together.” The Apostle Paul accuses them: “Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh” (Gal 3:3 ESV)?

“You may struggle against evil as long as you please, but…you will never be delivered from it in any way but by the blood of Jesus.…Your prayers, your repentance, and your tears—the whole of them put together—are worth nothing apart from Him” Charles Spurgeon (ref#34, April 23rd AM).

“In all failures in duty…remembering the innumerable tracers of imperfection and sin found upon all you do, deal frequently, closely, with the atoning blood. ‘Wash and be clean’ (2 Kings 5:13)”  Octavius Winslow (ref#61, July 18th). FATHER, remind me to always come.

“If you have ever come to the blood…you will feel your need of coming to it every day. He who does not desire to wash in it every day has never washed in it at all….there is still a fountain opened….Christ alone can give us joy and comfort….let us sprinkle our doorposts fresh with blood, and then, feast on the Lamb, assured that the destroying angel must pass us by” Charles Spurgeon (ref#34, April 17th AM).

CONFESSION

BELIEF MORE THAN BEHAVIOR

Screen Shot 2016-05-17 at 3.10.35 PM…FATHER, I desire to be more concerned about my beliefs than my behavior. The enemy would lead me to focus on my behavior—my poor behavior. He is forever reminding me of my sins—trying to convince me that I am “unworthy, unacceptable, sin-sick” who will never amount to anything in Your eyes (ref#14, p 57). Yet, at the same time, he encourages me to work harder at being better.

Your intention is that I confess, forsake the sin, and quickly move on with You. But, I have trouble moving on with You when my attention is on changing sinful behavior. Help me, LORD to dwell on my beliefs and not my behavior.

“I have been justified—completely forgiven and made righteous (Rom 5:1)” Neil Anderson (ref#14, p57). Because of CHRIST’s work sin no longer has dominion over me (Rom 6:14). I have passed out of sin as truly as the dead man has passed out of life (Rom 6:2). I have been placed into CHRIST by Your doing, FATHER (1 Cor 1:30). “…The life I am now living is Christ’s life (Gal 2:20)” (ref#14, p58). “…I am sanctified and am one with the Sanctifier, He is not ashamed to call me brother (Heb 2:11)” (ref#14, p59).

Admittedly, the below is also true:

  • I, along with everyone else, do not understand or seek You (Ps 53:2).
  • I, along with everyone else, corrupt my own way (Gen 6:12).
  • I, along with everyone else, have fallen away and am dishonest (Ps 53:3).
  • I, along with everyone else, do not do good (Ps 53:3).
  • I, along with everyone else, have a heart filled with destruction and do not speak truth (Ps 5:9).

FATHER, continually aid me to always perceive the truth about my perpetual sinful condition then turn immediately to rest with CHRIST on His accomplishments. He is the upright One who instructs and teaches me (Ps 25:8-9). I walk in His faithfulness, not in my faithfulness (Ps 26:3). May I seek joy in CHRIST alone, not in any good feelings I may get by improving my behavior.

CONFESSION

THE BATTLE OF SANCTIFICATION

Screen Shot 2016-05-16 at 1.09.00 PM“Believers find within themselves contrary urgings. The Spirit sustains their regenerate desires and purposes, but their fallen instincts (the ‘flesh’ obstruct their path and drag them back. The conflict of these two is sharp. Paul says he is unable to do what is right, and unable to restrain himself from doing what is wrong (Rom 7:14-25). This conflict and frustration will be with Christians as long as they are in the body. Yet by watching and praying against temptation, and cultivating opposite virtues, they may through the Spirit’s help ‘put to death’ particular bad habits (Rom 8:13; Col 3:5)” The Reformation Study Bible (ref#56, p1650, “Sanctification: The Spirit and the Flesh”).

FATHER, I learn the severity of my battle from the Apostle Paul in Romans 7. How humble You make me when I realize I can do nothing right and must depend on the SPIRIT to rescue me.

My plight may be pathetic but I can always be rescued. The SPIRIT has the victory as I cling to Him. “The Lord will draw me to himself away from every pernicious work actively opposed to that which is good, and will keep me safe and sound for His kingdom, the heavenly one, to whom be the glory forever and forever…” Kenneth S. Wuest (ref#37, p507, [2 Tim 4:18]). Life may seem as if I am tossed too and fro by overpowering waves, but forever under me is Your everlasting arms (Deut 33:27).

Because of Your great rescue, FATHER, I want to be pleasing to Your penetrating gaze. I want to be habitually keeping with solicitous care all Your commands (ref#37, p571, [1 John 3:22]). I don’t want to summons the SPIRIT only when I feel an overwhelming battle coming. Guide me FATHER, to walk continually with the SPIRIT so You can continually keep me (Gal 5:16).

CONFESSION

WANTING TO CONQUER SIN

Screen Shot 2016-03-28 at 6.06.12 AM…PATIENT FATHER, instill in me again that it is my old nature still residing in the members of my body that wants to conquer sin. But when, under my own strength, I succeed in not sinning, I become prideful—I hug myself like Micah when he got a real Levite and made him his own personal priest (Jud 17:12-13) (ref#35, p311).

However, as I move closer to Your CHRIST, communing with Him, I comprehend my utter unprofitableness regarding my ability to not sin. In communion I am face to face with the Infinitely Righteous who knows very well my vanity.

Let me quickly assign honor and glory to JESUS CHRIST for all that He has done for me. This brings fame to You, FATHER. Let me speak this truth to myself: You are credited each time CHRIST pardons me.

FATHER, You are attentive to CHRIST’s work, not mine. I am justified and accepted into Your kingdom only by the activity of JESUS CHRIST. He bears my iniquities (Isa 53:11) laying down His life as a ransom for my sins (Mark 10:45).

My sins will ever be before me (Ps 51:3), so let me rack my brain to think of them, not so I can attempt to stop doing them but so I can realize the extent of them and celebrate in praise that JESUS CHRIST answered Your justice for me. He has undergone the punishment that was and is due me.

CHRIST takes my sins and bears them away—disposes of them so You, FATHER, can be pleased with me and I can cling to CHRIST as He provides love, life, righteousness, and peace for me. Yes, He provides. Continue to remind me, FATHER, that as soon as I look upon my sin believing I can remove it (by overcoming it), I lose sight of CHRIST.

CHRIST, You call me to You even with my presently known load of sins. You say, “Come with your guilt of sin—come unto me (Matt 11:28) and honor the FATHER by laying yourself before Me so I can remove your sins as far as the East is from the West” (Ps 103:12).

Let me call on CHRIST to remove my sin and not petition You, FATHER, to help me remove the sin myself.

CONFESSION

INTERNAL RIGHTEOUSNESS

Screen Shot 2016-03-26 at 2.44.13 PM“If you would climb to heaven, stoop. Do we not say of Jesus, ‘He descended so that He might ascend’? So must you. You must grow downward so that you may grow upward, for the sweetest fellowship with heaven is to be had by humble souls, and by them alone”Charles Spurgeon (ref#34, April 5th PM).

FATHER, I want to become conformed to the image of Your Son (Rom 8:29)—His compassionate acts—His authoritative words—His unrivaled righteousness.

This way of thinking brings me close to the thin line where, on one side, activities are produced by my own energies, and, on the other side, activities are prompted by the SPIRIT. It is an unsafe place to be for the continual lure is to fall on the side of self-effort, which, at its best, can only “act” like CHRIST.

FATHER, direct me toward an internal righteousness—my striving to subject my mind, will, affections, and desires to JESUS. This is the place where the HOLY SPIRIT definitely works. “In every corruption subdued, in every…besetting sin laid aside, in every holy desire begotten, Christ is glorified…” Octavius Winslow (ref#61, August 24th). In repentance—with a broken heart—by being contrite I can bring You more glory than appearing impressively righteous to people around me.