Have you noticed how everyone is sorry for their sin . . . after they get caught? The repentance gear seems to kick in once the light exposes the dark places of people’s lives.
Jimmy Swaggart’s tears, Mark Sanford’s press conference, and Ted Haggard’s apology all come to mind.
But it’s not only true of those who are high profile. It’s true of people like me and you. We are much more likely to move away from sin only after it goes public that we are ensnared in sin.
So here’s a vote for pre-emptive confession.
Tell your spouse about your addictive tendencies before they get revealed, not after.
Speak to your therapist about your issues with alcohol before you spend a night in lockup, not after.
See your pastor about your volatile temper before you lose your job, not after.
Share with your small group about your reluctance to tithe before the financial storm, not after.
Talk to your recovery group about your fears of relapse before the slip, not after.
Pre-emptive confession is honest, courageous, and liberating. After all, I John 1:9 puts it this way: “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”