Reflections on Faith and Community

Dear friends,

On this page, you will find weekly reflections on life and faith. My hope is that, in some way, they will prove helpful to you in your daily living. You can also find them on the church's YouTube Channel in the "Weekly Word" playlist. May God bless you on the spiritual journey.

Andrew S. Odom

08/29/2016 8:59 PM

A Guilty Alternative

08/29/2016 8:59 PM
08/29/2016 8:59 PM

“If we confess our sins, God who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9)

I walk into the house, take one look at the dog, and right away I know. Emmie has done something she shouldn’t have. There she is sneaking around the room with her head held low, legs bent, ears down, trying not to make eye contact with me. It’s a dead give-away. She is guilty of something.

Whether you think dogs experience guilt or not, we all know that look. We know what that feeling is like. When we feel guilt, we too get that sunken lowered posture. We try to avoid eye contact and sneak away with our head held low. All we want to do is crawl into a corner somewhere and never come out again, avoiding it altogether. It does not have to be that way. Our guilt does not have to shut us down.

John’s first letter offers an alternative to cowering under our guilt when he writes, “If we confess our sins, God will cleanse us.” Another way of putting it would be to say, if you invite God to help you unload your guilt, you will find your load feeling a little lighter. You will also notice a newfound energy for actually changing the behavior that brought guilt on in the first place. It’s funny how it works that way. Something quite magical happens when we are able to shed ourselves of the guilt we are experiencing as we are set free to live a more faithful life. The best way to stop allowing guilt to rule your life is to crawl back out of the corner, walk right up to God, and let it go.

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