I have been judged, shamed, attacked and ridiculed for my sin. There is a punishment to pay when we sin, even if nobody else knows we did it. However, I am going to follow the example of St. Augustine and the example of Lecrae and publically confess to the sins that have been weighing me down for more than a decade.
Will I confess to every sin I have ever committed? No. I cannot remember every single one and nobody wants to read that laundry list. However, I am going to try to include the ones I feel have had the biggest impact on my life and have led me to where I am today.
We all have a past, whether it’s filled with closet skeletons or it’s filled with good memories and joyous occasions. I have both in my past and my sins have weighed me down long enough. I have confessed them in private before, but I still feel the weight of many of them and they have brought me to tears more than enough times for me to realize, there has to be a way to get past them.
St. Augustine published a book about his honest struggles with lust way back in the fourth century as a form of public confession. Many others have done it, too, but the recent confession from Lecrae hit home for me, for many reasons.
We are Human and We Hide
I don’t know how many times I have been told not to tell someone in my family something, whether it was a legitimate surprise or the sharing of the news might lead to shame. We see it in movies, TV shows and in our own lives. People keep secrets because they are afraid of the shame, ridicule, persecution and judgement they may face. Heck, in today’s society, you can be judged because you ate something and someone else thinks you’re just a little too big to be enjoying that sugary treat.
We are a society of judges, yet we rarely take the time to truly look at ourselves, our sins and where we are right now. God asked Adam in the first portion of the bible, “Where are you?” This wasn’t a question God asked because he couldn’t find Adam. It was a question he asked for Adam and for all of us. Where are you?
I am at a point in my Christian journey where a public confession may be the only way I can truly accept the forgiveness God offers. I have already realized, by opening up to the world on a blog, YouTube channel and social media outlets, I will be persecuted by some, ridiculed by others, judged by many, but I simply don’t care.
If my words inspire just one person, if my journey helps just one person, if my life example impacts just one person in a positive way, it’s worth it. I am not interested in what the negative people of this world only looking to lift themselves up by putting others down have to think.
As Christians, we are called not to judge and we are called not to compare ourselves to someone else. I take solace in knowing Christ came to save those needing saves and Saint Paul called himself the worst of sinners. I am right there with Saint Paul, as I am certainly the worst of sinners.
Below, I am going to break down my sins into a few categories. I am not going to go into great detail, as I am working on putting together videos to go with this post that may go into more detail. If you choose to comment, please be kind.
Confession The Sins of My Teenage Years
As a teenager, I lost my virginity at 16. Big Sin #1. It wasn’t to someone I loved or ever fell in love with. This was one of the worst decisions of my life and I can rationalize it in a million ways, but there is no true rationalization. It was my decision, my fault and my sin to live with.
I am not going to go into detail, but I can remember the night so vividly. It’s one of those things you know you shouldn’t have done, but because you did it, you can’t get the pictures out of your mind.
This first big sin led to teenage years filled with pre-marital sex and it led to the first abortion I was a part of. When I was 17, I got a young woman pregnant and she asked me if I wanted her to have an abortion. I said yes out of complete fear and complete immaturity. She went through with it and it not only destroyed our relationship, but it destroyed me. It probably destroyed her, too, but I haven’t spoken to her in over 15 years, so I really don’t know.
I could have been a man and accepted responsibility for my actions. I could have raised that child and done everything within my power to protect it, love it and be there for it, but I didn’t. I named this child Peter, as they tell you if you have been through an abortion, you should name the child and understand they are waiting for you in heaven.
I felt so much guilt, but I didn’t deal with it in a healthy way. By the end of my teenage years, I had been with more women than I prefer to admit and my biggest sins as a teenager were all centered on lust and sex. Of course, abortion is murder, so I have that one on my teenage record, too.
My Early 20s
I wasn’t a follower of Christ in my 20s at all. I am not even sure I was in my teen years or as a child. I didn’t truly become a follower of Christ until my 30s.
During my early 20s, my life was filled with lust, sex, cheating, marijuana, drinking and many other sins. I lied to everybody and lied to cover up my lies. I remember sitting down at the mall with one of the girls I dated when I was 25 and pouring out my heart to her. I wasn’t trying to win her back and actually thought she’d smack me and leave for good, which she eventually did leave, but not because of this conversation.
I told her about all the lies I had told to her and to other people. I dated her for about 6 months before I informed her I had a child on the other side of the country I had never met. That child has since been adopted and is nearly an adult today (happened when I was 19), but I hid this from so many people for so long thinking it was okay to hide. I was in denial for a long time and I believe I had sinned in so many ways because this was the second child I wasn’t there for at all.
My early 20s were guilt-ridden years filled with denial and filled with shame. I hid my shame and guilt by drinking, smoking pot and having sex. This led to getting another woman pregnant and while this situation was different, I am still very responsible for the sin of abortion, again, at the age of 25.
The woman I got pregnant made the decision without me, mostly, but I didn’t do everything I could to stop it from happening. I think this one hurt me even more than the first because I should have known better and I didn’t feel like I had any control over the situation or the decision. I can remember crying with her over and over again before it happened, but I can remember just simply being angry with her after the abortion.
While I have many, many, many terrible sins in my early to mid-20s, this one was by far the worst. I took an innocent life, even if I wasn’t the decision maker. I could have tried harder to stop it. I could have tried harder to keep her from making the decision, but I didn’t.
My Late 20s & Early 30s
Again, I was not a follower of Christ during my 20s. That’s not an excuse or a rationalization for my horrific sins, but simply part of the back story to help you understand a bit more about me.
My late 20s were filled with plenty more sins of lust and pre-marital sex. The pattern continued and it wasn’t a great time in my life.
During my late 20s, I met a woman I thought I would one day marry. However, she was going through a divorce, at the time and I really shouldn’t have been more than just a friend of hers. She ended up not getting divorced and I didn’t leave. In fact, I moved over 1,000 miles to be closer to her.
Before I moved, she and I had visited each other a few times and she claimed to be pregnant, but had some health condition that wouldn’t allow her to carry the baby. I cannot remember exactly what she told me, but she had called me from the hospital claiming the choice was basically her life or the baby’s life. We chose her life and to this day, I have a ton of questions about this entire situation.
However, if she did have an abortion, I am responsible. This one may not have happened or it may have. I don’t know, as I wasn’t there and I found out later, this woman had lied to me on numerous occasions. I still believe this was a sin of mine and treat it as such in my guilty mind.
This was about a year to 18 months before I found a book that actually turned me into a Christian. While I have certainly sinned since becoming a Christian, those sins don’t compare to the sins of my past. I still carry quite a bit of guilt from the sins of my past as I know I caused hurt and pain in others, which makes me feel like a horrible person.
Without the forgiveness of God, I would certainly be headed to hell. My life was a roller coaster of sin after sin after sin before I truly found Christ. My journey isn’t over, but I am certainly not the same person I was in my 20s and my early 30s.
I pray often that God forgives me and my unborn children forgive me. There could be others out there I don’t know about, as well. I hope, my sinful life and my public confession helps someone. I hope it brings me some sort of peace and I hope those I have hurt throughout my life find peace and comfort in Christ.