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AWAKEN 2019: A Freed Heart

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“Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy.”         - Proverbs 28:13

Human beings have attempted to hide personal sin since the moment The Fall took place (Genesis 3:8). As we see recorded in the Old Testament, one of the first things Adam and Eve did after they disobeyed God was attempt to hide from Him. When we assume that our sin can be hidden, we are fooling ourselves. Even though we can hide certain things from others, we cannot hide anything from God. The New Testament book of Hebrews says this:

“And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.” - Hebrews 4:13

Even if we conceal our sin from those around us, God sees as plain as day what we are hiding from others. It is of no benefit for a child of God to try and cover up their sin. As a matter of fact, not only is there no benefit, it hurts us and those around us when we live unconcerned about the sin in our lives. David, who was referred to as a man after God's own heart, knew better than anyone that keeping quiet about his iniquity didn't exactly work out for him. He wrote this in Psalm 32: 

“When I kept silent about my sin, my body wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night Your hand was heavy upon me; my vitality was drained away as with the fever heat of summer.”    - Psalm 32:3-4

When David refused to get honest with God about his sin, he experienced heavy conviction that ended up causing him to be miserable. In fact, the reality is, the most miserable people on earth are followers of Jesus who refuse to respond to God’s loving conviction about personal sin.

Freedom begins when we are fully transparent, and when we are fully transparent, we experience God’s mercy. This is what Scripture promises. It’s not always easy, but it’s always worth it. Nothing ever grows in the darkness, and the longer things stay hidden, the greater damage it does. When you cry out to Him, you will discover that He’s always been there, loves you, and extends His mercy to you.

Because of our flesh, we all have a tendency to attempt to conceal. In light of this, there is a lesson we must recognize as followers of Jesus: when we choose sin, we are not getting away with something; we are missing a deeper relationship with Someone. God desires for us to walk in His freedom, not weighed down with sin in our hearts. When we win, we miss out on what He desires for us until we confess and renounce it. 

In conclusion, take some time to read and reflect on the following questions:

  • Is there anything you are trying to hide from God?  See Psalm 32:5
  • What areas of your life have remained “hidden” from others but have never been hidden from God?  
    See Proverbs 5:21; Proverbs 15:3
  • Have you embraced God’s desire to show you mercy and furthermore help you?  See 2 Chronicles 16:9

AWAKEN 2019: A Confessing Heart

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 “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” - 1 John 1:9 

When people make promises to us, we are hopeful they will keep that promise. But when God makes a promise, we should never wonder if He will do what He says. You see, God is able to do an infinite number of things, but there are a few things He cannot do. One of which is lie: 

“For when God made the promise to Abraham, since He could swear by no one greater, He swore by Himself…so that by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have taken refuge would have strong encouragement to take hold of the hope set before us.” - Hebrews 6:13, 18 

So we know that when God promises something, He’s going to follow through. In today’s verse from 1 John, John wrote that the person able to forgive is ready to forgive. The question is “Is the person who needs forgiveness ready to ask for forgiveness?” The only reason a person would ask for forgiveness is if they believed they needed forgiving. Watchman Nee said, “No one has ever come to God without a need.” The faithfulness (God is consistently dependable) and righteousness (God is a good judge who will always do what is right) of God causes Him to cleanse or to purify the sinner of sin when the sinner confesses sin. Jesus’ death on the cross assured that. Confession means literally “to say the same thing.” In other words, agree with God about your sin. God wants to save people. He wants to forgive and will forgive all who confess.

Pride stands in the way of confession but so does ignorance about God. People cannot confess if they don’t know there is a God or if they know little about His Word. He has revealed His truth to you today through this devotional. May your response be to repent, turn around, choose Him, and confess your sin to Him. He will forgive you!

In conclusion, take some time to read and reflect on the following questions:

  • When’s the last time you asked God to reveal hidden sin that needs to be dealt with?  See Psalm 17:3
  • Have you intentionally been keeping your sin in the dark instead of dragging it out into the light?  <span>See Ephesians 5:7-13
  • Do you believe you need forgiveness See 1 John 1:8

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