My spiritual father once told me and quote, “Walter you are a closed book.” I think he was venting his frustration, and difficulty of trying to get me to share my secrets. His remark really didn’t matter much to me, because there was nothing personal I would ever share with him. My philosophy at the time was, “there are some secrets you want to keep in and others you dare not let out. Well, that was when I was younger and didn’t know better. In fact I met with him just yesterday.
There is bondage in keeping secrets but freedom in letting it out. Everyone of us should have somebody in our lives to whom we can talk to on a regular basis.
If you truly desire to live a life of freedom, victory and triumph over dark, sinful, secret habits – you must desire above all else a life of transparency. Your life has to be an open book. Letters or epistles for everyone to read – that is if you are brave enough – but at least your life should be an open book to a trusted friend, a seasoned mentor or a gifted confidant.
The more transparent, real and honest you are about dark, sinful, bad habits, the better you are able to fight, confront and defeat them. The one who hides his sins is already defeated, deceived and bound. Jesus said it best:
people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed (John 3:19-21 ESV)
There are many reasons why people hide their dark, sinful, secret habits:
- they know it is bad
- they feel like people will judge them
- they know that people tend to define others by their weaknesses
- they will be less trusted
- they might hear about in the community
- they just don’t trust anyone
- they feel like only Jesus should hear their stuff… not the priest, not the pastor, not their friends
- they feel they will never be loved and respected anymore
It is true that most of the things listed above can and have been a stumbling block for many. But I will argue that it is still a bad idea to keep your dirty laundry to yourself. Here is why:
Proverb 28:13 says, “Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.”
Psalm 32:1-4 says, Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man against whom the Lord counts no iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no deceit. For when I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was dried up as by the heat of summer.
You need to find somebody that you trust to talk to, someone you can share you struggles, trials and temptations with. Someone who can speak into your life, pray over you, bring counseling and wisdom to your life. As much as you give it the Lord through prayer, you should share with someone else. Sometimes just a simple act of sharing your struggles can bring liberation. But more than that, you can open yourself up to powerful prayer, new perspectives and uncompromising truth.
I know it can be a scary thing to confide in others, but it can be very liberating experience. So, take that step of faith today and prayerfully consider finding a mentor.
That is exactly how the power of secrets are broken.