Monsters in the Dark
“And the Pharisees and their scribes grumbled at his disciples, saying, “Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?” And Jesus answered them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.” (Luke 5:30-32, ESV)
It’s okay not to be okay. Really, it is.
You don’t have to have it all together to come to Jesus. In fact, it’s better that you come to Him honest, humble, broken, and empty.
Christians must comprehend that we “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). This is not only a past-tense problem; it is our present predicament, as well.
Romans 7:18-19 reads, “For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing.” Remembering that this statement comes from the writer of a good portion of the New Testament, we should not be so arrogant to think that we are exempt from the same struggles. Whether or not you choose to be forthright with yourself or others is your own prerogative, BUT if you fail to admit that you have a sin issue you are in denial!
We all have our own sin issues, so to confess them to God and to others who are in Christ is a healthy practice. James 5:16 says to “confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed.” This is not a suggestion. It is an imperative. Confession of sin is necessary for the Christ-follower; but to first arrive at such a vulnerable position, you must operate with the understanding that you have something for which you must give an account. To recognize this and express it outside of yourself is a beautiful thing. If you read on in James 5:16, it ends by saying that genuine confession, and the prayers that are directed toward the sin at hand, can bring about spiritual healing.
To live in un-repented sin is to make your bed in the darkness.
When you were a child, did you ever keep yourself up at night on account of the make-believe monsters that you swore surrounded your bed? I did. I remember being disturbed by the creepy sounds and odd shadows all around me. Granted, this fear was probably due to early exposure to horror films; but, nonetheless, the fright that overwhelmed me in my bed in those times, though imagined, felt very real. It was only when I would turn on the lights that the “monsters” would be exposed for what they truly were—creaking doors and furniture silhouettes.
Sin is like those imaginary monsters. It makes its home in the darkness and terrorizes our souls with the unknown—peoples’ perception of us, the after-effects of our poor judgment, etc. Sin is given power over us when we allow it to go unexamined and keep it hidden from the world. Like our childhood monsters, we just close our eyes and divert our attention elsewhere in hopes that it will just go away. It never does though. Until we deal with our sins and expose them with the light of the Gospel, they will continue to thrive in the darkness, unbeknownst to anyone else.
Jesus told us that He is the Light (don’t you love that). Darkness cannot prevail against light…that’s visibly proven. So when you humbly approach Jesus in confession, He illuminates the transgression and puts it on display for what it truly is—deadly and destructive. At the same time, He reminds those who are His that they have been “brought out of darkness into his marvelous light” (1 Peter 2:9). When Christ-followers allow sin to take them in, they are transporting themselves back to the darkness from which Christ rescued them.
1 John 1:7-9 states, “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
Do not walk around trying to fool anyone into thinking you’re something you’re not. While this show might impress some, it is harmful to your soul. It’s perfectly fine to join in with the rest of us and admit that you are not perfect. That’s why we desperately need Jesus in the first place!
If you’re haunted by your sin, confess it and be healed.
Monsters live in the dark. Take the Light into that darkness and let Him penetrate it with the truth of the Gospel. Be freed from the guilt and shame. Find rest in Jesus.