Saturday, December 10, 2005

confession dread

i'm an associate of the community of the holy spirit, an episcopal convent, which means that i'm a lay person (although there are ordained associates) who follows a rules of prayer, goes on retreats, and goes to confession twice a year. i hate confession. it ties in with my confusion over the concept of sin, redemption, salvation. i was told as a child that i am bad and i have so tied that in with my concept of sin that i think of confession as a chance for the priest to hear how bad i am. it's an internalized message that no amount of intellectual understanding will erase.
so, i've been making this a focus of my prayer and meditation. one thing i heard today in an al-anon meeting helped me look at it in a new light. the meeting i went to was on the first step, "we admitted we were powerless over alcohol, that our lives had become unmanageable." the reading was about how we may not have an issue with alcohol, or may not have an active alcoholic in our lives at present, but we can sustitute the word alcohol for other words like people, places, things. what i heard at the meeting is that when i think i can control other people, places, or things, i get far away from the one who really does have that power, god, and my life becomes unmanageable. i suddenly thought that maybe one definition of sin that i can relate to is that when i think i'm the one in charge, that i have control, that i am powerful, that is sin.
i am just starting to get a concept of how far i have to go yet. i feel like plato's man in the cave.
fortunately, i'm not the one in charge. there is a god and i'm not it.


Rudy Wellsand said...

Refreshing to see your post. Sink your MIND into THIS! We have DNA and RNA CODES, along with other CODES that switch things ON and OFF in our bodies to control us. WHO PUT THOSE CODES IN THERE? You CAN READ CODES RIGHT OUT OF YOUR OWN BIBLE, that controls your destiny. See the "Chosen"Code and "Color"Code. Visit: . I found many more CODES than these!

seeking_something said...

The focus of the sacrament of confession is God's mercy. The story of the prodigal son is a good one to consider.

In confession, we acknowledge that God is deserving of all our love. We acknowledge that we have sinned against his goodness. We express contrition, and ask that God help us to avoid these bad things. It's one thing to think it. It's another thing to crystalize it enough to say it.

In confession, we acknowledge that God is merciful and that we desire to accept His gift of forgiveness and that we will make an effort not to squander His grace.

Claire Joy said...

I hate confession too.

Jen Goodnow said...

i was so hoping that confession wouldn't sting when i became a nun and HAD NOTHING TO CONFESS ANYMORE!

LutheranChik said...

Maybe this is because I've never done a one-on-one confession with a clergyperson, but...I'd welcome the experience, as painful as it might be. (Or maybe that's just romanticizing the process.) I just don't know who I'd want as my confessor. My pastor would, I'm sure, be happy to do it, but...I'm not sure he's the one. One of my short-term goals is finding a spiritual director (not so easy here in the tundra of "up north" Michigan) with whom to talk about stuff like this.