- Dr. Gil Stieglitz
Turn Up the Volume of God's Voice
Welcome to our series, Experiencing God Everyday! Last time, Dr. Gil taught us about how we can hear God's voice if we tune into the right frequency. If you missed it, you can read it by clicking last week's devotion, Tune Into God's Frequency. This week, Dr. Gil teaches us how we can turn up the volume to God's voice in our lives. Keep reading to find out how this works.
Tuning into the voice of God on the right frequency is always a little challenging, and even scary if you are not used to doing it. But let me tell you that God does love us and wants our best. He knows that connecting with Him in a deep way will provide for the best life now and in the future. This first "radio channel" which God is broadcasting over will be powerful and exhilarating. God will speak and He wants to know if you are willing to listen.
Confession is one of the classic spiritual disciplines that turns up the volume of God's voice so that the average person can hear Him more clearly. When we line up our life with the standards of God, we can literally hear Him speak to us about where we are off the path. The best way to confess is to bring God's interaction into the process by asking God to speak to you about areas in your life that you have not been all you should be.
As a part of your time with God, quiet your heart and work through this confession exercise with God. The interaction will at times be intense, at times deeply sorrowful, at times frustrating, and at times deeply freeing. This is not about what you think or about your upbringing; it is about the Living God interacting with you about areas in your life that could improve. Realize that He has already forgiven you through what His son did on the cross at Calvary. It is like you are going to the bank and withdrawing what Jesus deposited to pay for part of your debt. It is this forgiveness and love that comes from God that we enter into even while we allow God to bring conviction, correction, and rebuke to our lives. We want to live lives that are the most like what Jesus wants from us. We don't want to continue to live diminished lives by hanging on to old sins that should be released.
There are three types of sins you can pray through-those of omission, commission, and wickedness. Omission sins are things you should have done but failed to do. These are areas where you failed to live up to a particular standard. This is where you forgot or neglected a task, duty, attitude, or benefit. In the midst of your time with God, ask God if during this last day you committed any sins of omission. Did you fail to do something that you truly should have done? Let God speak and bring to mind incidents, people, or situations. Don't be in a big hurry to condemn yourself. Remember that God does not condemn you; He wants you to receive forgiveness and correction so that this omission does not continue to be a part of your life.
Commission sins are where you did something that was wrong. These are sometimes called trespass sins. You crossed a moral line. You stole something, you lied, you blew up at someone, you committed adultery, you rebelled against your authority, you blasphemed God, or maybe you schemed to gain something your neighbor possessed. This is where you acted in someway that you should not have acted. Ask God if in the last day or so you did anything that was clearly wrong. Let God bring things to your mind. Do not try and invent things that could have been wrong. If God doesn't bring anything to mind then let it go. If God has something to say then He will bring it to your mind.
Wickedness is a stronger sin that the other two because it suggests that in some way you are hurting others by what you are doing. Wickedness means that you are gaining at another's expense. Are you taking shortcuts to get what you want that cheats, harms, or damages another person? It doesn't matter whether this is legal or illegal; it matters whether it offends God. The 10 Commandments mark out moral lines where a person begins to hurt others if they pursue their own gain past certain lines. Are you blaspheming God in some way when it is convenient? Are you cheating your employer or employees out of all that they deserve? Are you using anger, violence or the threat of harm to get your way? Are you harming others to get what you want sexually? Are you stealing from someone? Are you lying to someone to get what you want and harms them? Are you scheming against someone to deprive them of something that they have or could have? These are all examples of wickedness. Ask God if you have or are now committing any sins of wickedness.
If God brings something to your mind in these areas, then dialogue with God about it. If it is clear that it was wrong, then agree with God (confess) that it was wrong. Ask God to apply the forgiveness that is the blood of Christ to that sin. Ask God about what you need to do to keep from doing that when that situation arises again. Ask God to give you the strength and wisdom to do the right thing next time. Accept the forgiveness of God that is in Jesus. You don't have to pay for that sin Jesus already did. Enjoy the love and forgiveness of God. By faith accept that you have been forgiven. If God brings up another sin then deal with that sin in the same way.
God is full of love and grace for you. He promises in 1 John 1:9, that "if we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness." I encourage you to also look at these verses and allow the Holy Spirit to minister to you as only He can:
I look forward to interacting with you during your spiritual journey. Please email me to let me know how God is working in and through your life. Your greatest life is ahead.
In His service, Gil Stieglitz
Spiritual Disciplines of a C.H.R.I.S.T.I.A.N.
If you would like to read more about this spiritual exercise of confession, then read the chapter on Confession in Dr. Gil's book Spiritual Disciplines of a C.H.R.I.S.T.I.A.N. Visit our online store and order your copy today!