Chapter-a-day James 5

Out_of_the_darkness_into_the_lightMake this your common practice: Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you can live together whole and healed. James 5:16 (TM)

There’s a local bar and grill down the cove from our little trailer on the lake. It’s common for us to eat there when we’re at the lake for the weekend. Like most pubs, the walls are filled with a cacophony of antiques, artifacts and silly signs. In this particular establishment, I noticed a mirror behind the bar which was advertising a certain brand of liquor. Written at the bottom of the mirror, right next to the logo, was written: "Don’t worry. By 1 a.m. she’ll be beautiful."

The sign started my mind thinking about the fact that bars and night clubs are typically dark places. Darkness hides things and it’s in the darkness that sin typically holds sway. At 1 a.m., after several drinks, that woman will look different than in the sober light of day. There is truth, still, in the broader principle.

Sin and evil are mirror reflections of that which is good. Good things grow in the light. Bad things grow in the dark. When we hide things in the darkness of secrecy, then sin has a chance to take root in the soil of guilt and fed by shame, the fruit of sin perpetually blooms.

Confession is the process of bringing that which is hidden in secrecy, that which has grown in the darkness, into the light. Sharing shameful secrets with a trustworthy confidant is the first step to breaking the power that sin has in my life. Like a homely woman who looks beautiful and sexy in the darkness of an inebriated bar at 1 a.m., sin which is kept in the darkness of secrecy appears far more powerful than it really is.

The path to wholeness begins with the step of confession. By bringing that which I’ve hidden in the darkness into the Light, the healing journey can begin.

Creative Commons photo courtesy of Flickr and waterwin.

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