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Trying to do life alone?

Don’t let anyone under pressure to give in to evil say, “God is trying to trip me up.” God is impervious to evil, and puts evil in no one’s way. The temptation to give in to evil comes from us and only us. We have no one to blame but the leering, seducing flare-up of our own lust. Lust gets pregnant, and has a baby: sin! Sin grows up to adulthood, and becomes a real killer. (James 1:13-15)

Did you realize that sin actually grows in the dark? That is why it is so wrong for us to hide our sin - in the dark it has a greater chance of growing. We lust and that leads to looking - looking leads to action - trying to stop leads to us thinking about that sin time and time again. It is a cyclical thing. Shame makes us want to hide our sin - but that is the worst thing we can do when we sin. Don't conceal your sin - confess it. Sin needs to be brought into the light in order to be free from it. "You can’t whitewash your sins and get by with it; you find mercy by admitting and leaving them." (Proverbs 28:13) Confessing your sins to God brings forgiveness and cleansing - healing comes when we confess our sins in honesty to others. We are not meant to live this Christian walk alone - because we cannot fight the appeal of sin on our own. We need the accountability that comes when we 'partner together' to overcome sin in our lives.

We deal with this 'internal' temptation to given into sin in community with others who know how to walk close to Jesus. We find we are not fighting alone - we have others fighting along with us. As we 'fight together' we are sending the enemy into flight in large ways. Emotional healing comes when we stop hiding our sin and begin to realize we have help from others who walk with us while we are fighting our sin. Sin is a killer unless we deal with it - hiding it doesn't deal with it - it just attempts to cover it up. The peace we crave comes when we stop concealing our sin. We are only as strong over our sin as we are honest about our sin. That scares a whole bunch of us, doesn't it? Honesty about what we struggle with the most is tough business, but as long as we conceal our sin we allow it to grow - to continue to entice us from within.

Some of us are intent about living free of our sin - some of us are 'kind of intent' - when we partner with one who is more intent than we are, we find our level of accountability is brought to a new level. We begin to set new limits on our temptation - we stop hiding that sin and bring it into the light. A pastor friend once told me we will always seek to hide until we are surrounded by others who don't hide. It is a lot easier to stop hiding when we begin to allow others to see our 'real' life and who live 'real' lives themselves. If we have a tendency to always hide our sin, we may be hanging around with a group of others who also are hiding their sin. Remember, when we are with someone who craves righteousness, we find we are freer to crave the same things.

Sin needs not only forgiveness - it needs healing. Sin's forgiveness comes through Christ - at the foot of the cross. Sin's healing comes in community together - as we partner together with others who crave righteousness (freedom from sin). Eventually the appeal of sin will become less and less in our lives - because the appeal of righteousness will be greater and greater. God guides our steps toward confession, but he also guides our steps toward healing. Don't try to do life alone - it isn't going to end well. Just sayin!


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