At the last Impact meeting we started our series Defeating Darkness. To start this off we went through 1 John 1:5-10, which says the following:
5 This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. 7 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. 8 If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.
When looking to apply this to our lives a few things stood out to me.
First, we need to be accountable. In our own lives there are things that we are trying to do in our walk with God, whether it be being consistent with reading the Bible or a sin we are trying to stop. But as humans, and I know this is something that I struggle with personally, is asking a fellow believer for help. As Christians we are all trying to serve God to our best abilities, but we end up trying to do it ourselves. I found myself asking, “why am I trying to do this myself?” I have God to help and I have fellow Christians to keep me accountable.
Going along with being accountable, we need to also make it a habit to confess our sins. Doing this will make it harder for us to dwell on them and make it easy to break those bad habits. Andrew made a good point in his last message about how we need to confess our sins out loud. We need to actually say them out loud and be specific about them. Doing this takes those sins that we hide from others and hide within ourselves and brings them into the light. This is something that is really hard for me to do but is something that really helped me break old habits. Knowing that I would have to confess verbally what I did forced me to break old habits and replace them with habits that pleased God.
When confessing our sins, we need to confess them to other Christians that we trust enough that we can be completely honest with them. Doing this will give us someone else that can keep us accountable. We also need to confess our sins to God, we are doing this all for him. Verse nine says that if we confess our sins he WILL forgive us. We have to actively confess our sins, this is not something that we can be passive about.
Another thing that we need to do, myself included, is to not make reading God's word an afterthought. I personally find myself waking up and going through YouTube, Netflix, Snapchat, and other apps before I open up my Bible to read Gods word. We need to make this something that we want to do, not something that we do just to check a box and say that we did it. In my personal experience I find that having someone that can keep me accountable helps tremendously.
Fourth and finally we need to pray. We live our lives for God, so why would we not want to talk to him? He is there for us constantly, with the best advice. When he have a hard time or a problem we go to a friend or family member before we talk to God. Why is this?
No matter what we do, God will forgive us, and he always there to talk to.
Andrew Caes, Freshman at IUPUI