I had a thought the other day that I wanted to post, but only now made it to a computer (or compooter:) to do so. I have a young relative who is struggling with rebellion over the last year or so. She lived at home, started attending college, and worked part time. In this last year she has apparently grown increasingly discontent at home, due to restrictions placed on her by her parents. However in talking with her mother, the restrictions were not overly oppressive, and they were not charging her any rent to live and eat at home. Through further conversation, the subject came up about how this young relation of mine came to the conclusion a few years ago that she didn't have a testimony because she wasn't "saved from some wild lifestyle". That somehow because she had never lived on the wild side, her testimony was non-existent.
I have wondered these same things. I grew up reltively sheltered, not exposed to much in the line of wild living. I too wondered about how I would explain to an unbelieving friend what Jesus had done in my life, when the before and after pictures of me looked very similar. As I pondered this concept, I began to see how arrogant this is. How self-righteous. That in our youth, the good kids don't see how much sin they have to be saved from. That in spite of outwardly "good" behavior, I and others have sinful attitudes, motives, thoughts etc. that are enough to send me to the pit of hell!! That if I refrained from outward rebellion in my youth it was only the grace of God that kept me from doing so. It may be true that the rebel who comes to Christ knows the extent of his salvation in a way that is more obvious, but that doesn't negate the fact that all of us have sinned in thought or attitude or deed, and are deserving of separation from God for all eternity. Perhaps this is the reason why the Scriptures tell us to confess our sins to one another. Because so many of us have sins that we can hide all to ourselves. Sins that, unless we choose to reveal them, are private--until we come to the eyes of God, who sees all we do and think and feel. Often if we are able to confess a sin to someone, it loses its power over us. As humiliating as confessing a sin can be, it is good for us to do regularly. This begs a question however. When in our church services do we confess our sin? When do we take the time to find a friend to confess to? Our American Christian life tends to allow us to hide our inner sins. Our churches don't allow for that kind of open sharing. Even our friendships tend to be only what we think the other person wants to see. I challenge you to be real. Find a trusted friend and confess these sins. Obviously confess the sins you do to the person you trespassed, and confess all to our Heavenly Father.