Monday, March 8, 2010

More Painful Than Repentance

Psalm 32 sings the praises of a God who forgives.  As Christians, we talk about forgiveness and repentance and confession a lot.  But talking about it a lot sure doesn't seem to make it any easier.  Is there anything more difficult than admitting when we've been wrong about something?  It's so painful, sometimes embarrassing and humiliating to admit when we've done something wrong.  Sometimes being a Christian or being in Church can actually seem to make it harder to repent and confess because we think we're supposed to be better than that or something.  Or maybe we're just worried about what everyone else will think.  Or maybe we're worried about what God will think; that maybe this time God won't be able to forgive us; that we've just gone too far.  Or maybe its just that we can't stand to see ourselves that way; maybe our own self-worth is too wrapped up in being right all the time.

But what's the other option?  Continuing down our current path even though we know its not the right one?  Turning around and starting down an entirely new path may be difficult but it is certainly better to make the correction when we first see the error of our ways than it is to keep going down the wrong path only to be convinced later that we must now back track even further.  I often think of confession and repentance as a kind of spiritual surgery; it is certainly painful at first but the temporary pain is meant to lead to greater overall health.  Without the surgery and the pain that accompanies it we only become more and more ill.

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