ODJ: dark secrets

February 18, 2015 

READ: Psalm 32:1-11 

When I refused to confess my sin, my body wasted away, and I groaned all day long (v.3).

Do you have a dark secret that you’ve kept from others? Maybe you did something you think is so bad that if people found out about it they would have nothing to do with you. Perhaps you’re hooked on watching porn or you struggle with substance abuse. Maybe you’re carrying deep hatred for someone who hurt you.

Some people think that it’s best to keep such skeletons tucked away in a closet. But as one man learned, keeping dark secrets can be its own punishment.

In 2 Samuel 11 we see the story of how David, Israel’s second king, chose to have sex with another man’s wife and got her pregnant. When he was unable to cover it up, he arranged for the woman’s husband to be placed on the front lines where he died in battle. Shortly thereafter he married the grieving widow

(2 Samuel 11:1-27).

For over a year, David hid his secret. He didn’t tell a single soul, refusing even to discuss it with God. But keeping it hush-hush tore him up inside. In Psalm 32, David wrote about this time in his life, “When I refused to confess my sin, my body wasted away, and I groaned all day long” (v.3). The torture of hiding his secret ended when he broke down and confessed what he had done. “Finally, I confessed all my sins to you and stopped trying to hide my guilt. . . . And you forgave me! All my guilt is gone” (v.5; see also 2 Samuel 12:1-13).

Are you hiding a secret that’s making you sick inside? Confess it to the Lord and consider sharing it with someone safe who won’t be put off, won’t put you down, nor pull away from you. You’ll discover one of the ‘best kept secrets’ of life—the power of vulnerably confessing our faults to each other (James 5:16).

—Jeff Olson

365-day plan› Numbers 12:1-16

Read Psalm 51:1-12 and consider where true confession to God can lead. 
What’s keeping you from confessing your dark secret sins to God? How does unconfessed sin affect you and those you love? 
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