I need to admit something to you.
When my sister and I were dividing up the portions of the Planted study to write and I was assigned “Confession,” I dreaded writing about it. I put it off until the very end, not because I disagree with confession, but because I was afraid of what the Lord would have me “confess.” I didn’t understand this discipline. I needed to see His grace and mercy woven throughout this discipline. As I studied, God helped me empty the junk drawers of my heart. I was set free, and I continue to be set free. Instead of receiving condemnation from the Lord, He heaped grace upon grace on my hand and set my shackled hands free. The Lord used what I dreaded most to set me free.
Confession is rare to come by in this day because we don’t want to uncover sin. We fear being exposed. We hide under the guise of “perfection” through social media. We cover up before we go out to the world. The enemy wants us to stay in bondage, but Christ came to set us free. If you are wrestling with sin, hiding it in the junk drawers of your heart, let me challenge you to empty it. Lay it all out before the Lord. He already knows. He won’t be surprised. He has already offered grace. Confession is a means to freedom, not condemnation. As you cry out, as you come, as you bow before the Lord in your nothingness, hold your hands open and receive His grace.
He is faithful, my friend. More faithful than our hearts could ever comprehend.
A few years ago I knelt in the Garden of Gethsamane, knees in the rocks, hands in the dirt, and I prayed. I confessed, “Lord, I need You” in the very same garden that Jesus prayed for the Father’s will to be done. It forever changed my life and planted an image of confession in my heart. Let us kneel, knees in the rocks, hands in the dirt, and lift our hands high to Jesus Who hung on a cross so we could be set free.
Lord, we come, we confess, we receive Your grace. Your love runs deeper than our worst moments. You are good, and we love You. Amen.
Knees in the rocks, hands in the dirt,
I kneel before you, questioning my worth.
The heaviness of sin, bears on my chest,
Can I be free? Can I find rest?
I wrestle, lonely, face close to the ground,
Breathing in my smallness, feeling lost, but found.
My mind is racing, on the things of me,
I’ve got to release this, I confess to be free.
This pride, it sneaks up in my soul,
Building a kingdom of my own.
This envy, it steals all my delight,
Directing my gaze to the darkness of night.
Bitterness, doubt, betrayal, lust,
Vanity, accolades, in these I trust.
My sins, they pile up, like a heap of snow.
I shiver at the coldness of my soul.
My complaints, they are founded on one thing,
Myself, my pride, not You, my King.
The weight—it feels too much to bear.
Are you near me? Do You care?
I look up and see You, hanging there,
Nails in Your hands, spread in the air.
My sin, You now bear on Your chest.
My freedom, You’re purchasing for my rest.
“Why me, dear Lord?” I ask in disbelief.
This love, it’s impossible, how can it be?
A drop of sweat falls and stings Your eye,
You look down to me, I start to cry.
Without a word, You speak, You call,
Come to me, my child, just as You are.
“But, Lord, I’m stained, I’m a tangled mess.
How can You cover my brokenness?
I’ve lived so long with chains on my wrists.
See the scars? They’ve left their own imprints.”
You direct my eyes to Your hands and feet,
Oh the imprints those nails will leave!
Imprints of freedom, not slavery.
Imprints of new life, and victory.
Those imprints that are pierced for me—
You hang, because Your love runs deep.
Your head, it’s pierced, blood dripping down.
Your brow, it’s furrowed, from the crown.
Your feet, they’re pinned on a splintered cross,
Your hands, they worship, as You save the lost.
“I believe, I confess!” You start to die.
You breathe a breath, I continue to cry.
Darkness descends all around,
I cannot get up from the ground.
You lift Your face as You cry this plea,
“Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?”
“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
Forsaken, rejected, despised, and shamed,
all for the glory of Your name.
The shackles that once had a hold on me,
begin to loosen, my heart believes.
They are calling out, hurtful names I deserve.
You silently receive these disgraceful words.
I feel the pain, I’m just like them.
I have run from You, I have been misled.
Your breathing, it’s slowing, You look at the crowd,
Your mouth opens, You say aloud,
“It is finished!” Yes, the deed is done.
Death has lost, Christ has won.
My hands, they lift up from my sides,
To worship my Savior, crucified.
It should have been me hanging on that tree,
But if it were me, I would never be free.
Only You could redeem the lost.
Only You could hang upon that cross.
Only You have the power to break the chains,
Only You have the authority to give me a new name.
They take Your body, lay it in a tomb,
Close the stone of that tiny room.
Three days pass, the stone starts to quake,
You sit up, walk out, You are awake.
The imprints are still in Your hands,
Imprints of freedom, grace, and Your perfect plans.
The sin no longer holds my soul,
I’m free, I’m adopted, I am made whole.
My knees are still in the rocks,
I stay here lest I forgot the cross.
You reach out your hand, You clean up my mess.
You heal me in my brokenness.
Jesus, Savior, Master, Friend,
I praise You forever, I am forgiven.
Those three words that You said for me,
I say today, “It is finished, I am set free.”