Why do murderers confess?

I find it interesting watching shows where they track down murderers and they lock them in those little rooms with two detectives. As we watch on through grainy video, it always goes like this, “No I didn’t do it, you have the wrong person, I wasn’t even there…” And as I watch these real life crime shows I start to wonder, ‘maybe they didn’t do it?’. But the detectives know something I probably should know. Guilt is a heavy load. Guilt only gets heavier and heavier the longer you leave it hanging off your shoulders. Proverbs tell us it causes us to “…run when nobody is chasing us…” and David says in Psalm 32 “When I refused to confess my sin, I was weak and miserable, and I groaned all day long…  My strength evaporated…”.

However, I am always amazed when all of sudden the guilty party on those shows says, “Yes I did it…!” I think to myself, “Why did you say that?! You were nearly free!” But they weren’t were they? In fact the amazing thing is often they will say, “I feel like a great weight has been lifted off my shoulders.” They actually start to relax. They would rather go to jail than carry the weight of guilt.

If that is what it is like on the big level, then surely this is what it is like in our everyday lives. We carry around guilt that we don’t have to. Confession breaks the cycle. Confession causes us to acknowledge our broken state and look for a savior, who of course is Jesus Christ. In a nutshell we say, “I am more sinful and flawed than I ever dared imagine, but I am more loved and accepted than I ever dared hope.” When we think like this, guilt and shame cause us to run TO God rather than away from Him.

What do you need to own today? What do you need to confess to a living and loving God? God’s desire is to move toward you and lift the burden of guilt and shame.

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