If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9)
This is a marvelous promise, but we must take its condition seriously: “If we confess our sins…” In other words, if we see the red light and bring it to God in confession, and trust in Christ’s blood to cover it.
Confession must always be first to God, but it will help you if you are able to talk honestly with someone who knows you and cares about you. Many Christians have found this helpful over the years.
You might meet, for example, with your bible study group and share with them that you’ve seen some changes in your own heart. You don’t like what you’re seeing. So you list several things – one of them is that you’re becoming less patient. That’s a red light. It needs to be addressed.
Or a man who recently retired meets regularly with other Christian men for coffee, and he’s moving away from some responsibilities that he had before. He says to them, “I can see the path to becoming a grumpy old man from here and I don’t want to go down it.”
Do you see what he’s doing? He’s watching his heart. He sees what is coming, and he is saying, “If I allow that to take root in my soul, I will dishonor Christ in my older years. I must guard my heart with all vigilance!”
What is the last sin that you confessed and trusted in Christ’s blood to cover?