Recently I came across a story in the newspaper on the remarkable success of a website called dailyconfession.com. “Chat rooms and confessional sites are exploding in popularity–dailyconfession.com receives as many as 1.3 million hits a day–as young people become more comfortable sharing intimate secrets and seeking advice online.” One nineteen-year-old user of the site related, “The idea of confessing isn’t necessary about right and wrongn. It’s about unloading a burden. It’s almost cathartic.”
. . .
“Kate, a 23-year-old from Texas who describes herself as spiritual but not religious has visited daily confession almost every day for five years. ‘I like reading people’s confessions because it’s nice to know that I’m not any more selfish, petty, conceited, weird or macabre than everyone else in America,’ she wrote in an e-mail to a reporter.” But this means that confession is not a matter of being brokenhearted by offenses toward God and receiving his forgiveness; rather, it is a matter of justifying oneself as no worse than the average.
Does anyone else notice how common this sort of thing is in our churches these days? People including myself love to say, “We’re all messed up, we’re all broken, we’re all hurt, etc.” And this sort of thing is supposed to bring everyone together, to pray for each other and experience moments of healing. It’s all very therapeutic. Well, I’m not going to deny that God is in the business of healing broken people, but he is first and foremost in the business of pardoning juvenille people who receive his Son by faith. That’s where true healing begins.