Posted by: jmark | January 12, 2005

Confession – Searching the Heart

Following on from adoration, confession is another of prayer I find difficult. Not because I have nothing to confess, but because it is easy to focus on ‘big’ sins, the obvious ones, and to fail to search our hearts for hidden faults. These can lie undetected and cause all sorts of festering problems.

Here’s a list I came across somewhere, called The A-Z of Hidden Sin. I’ve added to it, and you can do likewise. On my own copy I mark those that I am particularly prone to, and use it to help me search my heart.

An A-Z of Hidden Sin

Addiction

Anger

Animosity

Anxiety

Being negative

Being unwatchful for Satan

Bitterness

Boastfulness

Bringing dishonour to God’s name,

Closed-mindedness

Complaining

Condemnation

Covetousness

Critical nature

Deception

Discord

Discouragement

Dissention

Dogmatism

Domination

Egoism

Envy

Failure to spur one another on

Failure to show Christian love

Fear

Gluttony

Gossip

Guilt

Hard-heartedness

Hatred

Haughtiness

Hostility

Idolatry

Immoral fantasies

Impatience

Impurity

Indifference

Inflexibility

Injustice

Insincerity

Intemperance

Jealousy

Judgmentalism

Lack of affection

Lack of concentration in worship/prayer

Lack of faith

Lack of forgiveness

Lack of zeal

Laziness

Materialism

Neglecting to study God’s Word

Prayerlessness

Prejudice

Pride

Purposelessness

Quick temper

Rebellion

Resentment

Rudeness

Self-righteousness

Selfish ambition

Selfishness

Silence

Skepticism

Squandering

Stealing God’s Glory

Time misspent

Unbelief

Ungratefulness

Untruthfulness

Vanity

Yielding to Satan’s temptations

Zeal misplaced

I have also used various verses that highlight different issues that we need to be vigilant for:

2 Timothy 3:1 There will be terrible times in the last days. 2 People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, 4 treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God- 5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them.

Matthew 23:25 “You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence.

Mark 12:30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”

Merciful Lord,

Pardon all my sins of this day, week, year,

all the sins of my life,

sins of early, middle, and advanced years,

of omission and commission,

of thought, word and deed,

sins in private, in the family, in the neighbourhood,

in work and recreation,

in my relationship with you,

in my relationship and dealings with others.

Pardon all my sins, known and unknown,

felt and unfelt,

confessed and not confessed,

remembered and forgotten.

Good Lord, hear;

and hearing, forgive.

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