The Discipline of Confession

The confession of evil works is the first beginning of good works

– Augustine of Hippo

This is the first of the four corporate disciplines that I will be going through. These are disciplines that relate to the corporate life of a Christian, in fellowship with the Body of Christ.

The biggest problem with confession is that it makes Christians look “bad”. As believers, we like to make ourselves look holy so that others get the impression that we have it all together and that Christianity means a better and holier life. While I agree that Christianity should result in a holy life, I don’t agree that we should withhold confession in order to maintain a good reputation. God could care less about our reputation with others if we neglect our responsibilities as believers to live holy lives.

Another problem we come up against is that of embarrassment. We tend to think we are the only ones not living up to the high standards of Christ, and that we will be looked at as a failure if we confess we have done wrong. What results is a secret and hypocritical life which leads to deeper and more damaging sin.

I admit, I haven’t always confessed what I have done wrong right away. I am no better at it than the rest of us. I have no excuses and no reasons, other than the two mentioned above. What I have done, however, is made a commitment to a mentor that I will confess my sins to him. By doing that, I have someone holding me accountable, someone who cares about me, and who has gone through many years of practicing the christian disciplines.

I encourage you to find a mentor you can trust. Not multiple people, just one, who you can confess everything to. This could be a parent, counsillor, teacher, elder or pastor. My only recommendation is that you find someone who has dedicated their life to practicing christian discipline. My warning is that you don’t choose someone the same age as, or younger than you. The reason is that this can often turn into an accountability relationship, where you are holding them accountable. You may wonder why that is a problem. Here is why: the blind can’t lead the blind. If this person is experiencing the same struggle as you, they would be fine accountability partners, but not a good mentor. Accountability partners walk and struggle together, whereas a mentor leads the mentoree in their walk with God.

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