The Hard Work of Confession

The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ But the father said…
- Luke 15:21-22

This is where the son’s confession meets its inglorious end. Imagine him practicing his confession over and over on his long journey home, only to have it be interrupted abruptly. If you go back to verse 18-19 you can see that the son’s confession was a lot longer, but the father wasn’t interested in him getting the words right or groveling. The father wanted him home. The father wanted him in his arms. And as much as the father wanted to close the distance between them, he also wanted to banish the unworthiness inside him.

So as you consider confession today, are you getting a sense of God’s heart? God’s ready to interrupt you as soon as you head down the “I’m unworthy” path!

So today, think through something you’re in need of confessing - some broken place in your heart that you’ve hidden away, some mess up from yesterday or last week, some selfish, prideful, mean-spirited moment. Name it and bring it to God. And here is the key - let God interrupt you when you start to tear yourself down. Be keenly aware of that verse, “But the father said…” and listen for what God is saying instead of what your shame is saying.

This is the hard, practical work of confession. Are you willing to do it today? Are you willing to put in the hard emotional work to name your sin, listen for your shame, and then listen harder for the voice of God reminding you that you are the beloved and that coming home is exactly the right thing to do? Go do the hard work of confession.