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Consequences of Concealment

Last night I was with some new friends who were talking about the amazing healing God was bringing about in their marriage. The healing and restoration was proceeded by a humbling admission that things weren’t right in their marriage and secrets had been building up for years.

Provers 28:13 is a powerful reminder of the dangers of concealment:

People who conceal their sins will not prosper, but if they confess and turn from them, they will receive mercy.

So true isn’t it? I thought about all the different temptations and sins that I’ve tried to keep secret over the years. Each one of them only grew and gained momentum in the dark. Even if I eventually overcame the sin I never seemed to find real healing until I brought it out into the light.

So these days I try to avoid the power of these secrets by dragging recognized sin into the light as quickly as I can.

For example, a couple years ago we had an amazing baptism service at our Cross Point Nashville campus. Blake Bergstrom did the majority of the baptisms as the campus pastor and did an amazing job. Up until just a year ago I had done the overwhelming majority of baptisms that took place at Cross Point and had enjoyed it so much. There are few moments in ministry that compare to the beauty and celebration of baptisms. However, looking back, part of the reason I enjoyed them so much was for some of the attention I received when doing them.

While watching Blake get to share those moments with each one of those people there was a voice inside of me that said, “Pete, that should be you up there. You should be doing the baptisms. You should be enjoying that moment with them.”  I was embarrassed by the jealousy and envy that seemed to come out of nowhere.

That next week, in our campus pastors meeting I had to confess the way I was feeling. I could have told myself that it was nothing or that it would pass or that I was justified. But I knew what would happen. I knew there would be consequences to that concealment.  I knew there would be power in that secret.

I remember hearing Andy Stanley say something like this years ago . . . 

The reason you fear the consequences of confession is because you’ve yet to realize the consequences of concealment.

Have you seen this play out in your life?

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Pete Wilson is the founding pastor of Cross Point Church in Nashville, TN and author of a new book entitled Plan B, his thoughts about what to do when life doesn’t turn out the way you thought it would. He is a frequent blogger on his popular ministry blog, WithoutWax.tv. Pete is married and has three sons.