A Sinful Penitent Cries out to God
The first criterion needed is one who knows he is a sinner. Just like a person who has an irretrievable addiction which cannot be eliminated until that person knows and admits to the attraction can one who is deeply imbedded within sin is able to confront it head on.
Our second problem is realizing the grasp any sin has upon our conscience which is easily blinded to the attraction and turns our head away from the delicious tempter which says; “if you are the only one who experiences this malady then what is the need to let others know.” This may become the strongest enticement to remain silent and allow the knowledge of confession to sit unattended.
When a person decides to clean their floors and looks for a quick and hidden manner to accomplish the task, just lift up the corners of the carpet and sweep the dirt under. If the carpet is large enough to hide the filth no one will ever know. However, the heaps of the hidden dirt will someday need to get out as there may not be enough room for any more. With concealed sin the result eventually will become a bulge affecting our personality and the secret will have to escape. The bad scenario here is a scar upon our soul will tear open and the last will be worst than the first.
It’s the same as the healing of memories, a sacramental ministry of digging deeply into a penitent’s innermost being and bringing out the sin that has made a home within one’s sub-conscience and has roots that are intwined deep inside our health and common sense to the result of affecting mental and physical health to the point of non-retrieval.
Being involved in such a ministry can be a little scary when the hidden sins are brought forth and you see how a person can be made like a robot concealing these demons disguised as part of the penitent’s make-up. Until this action is applied the person suffering doesn’t even know there is a problem. Of course, once these demons are recognized the person harboring them becomes a new light shining for the first time.
We know that some of the buried maladies are there because of another’s willful intentions. I will present at least one from a group discussion of this type of healing.
At our table were at least four or five persons and after some prayer were allowed a little time to reflect on whatever the Spirit would ingratiate within our minds. As each was reflecting I envisioned a young girl, around 12 years of age, standing on the street of an old town with western style buildings that would have been common in the early western part of the country, or in a Mexican town. It represented the 1920’s and poverty seemed to be affluent. This young girl, shabbily dressed, was standing on the street and crying as though no one cared about her. I mentioned the vision and a middle aged young woman who was part of our group began to sob which got all of our attention. After she composed herself she said quite openly that young girl was her. She related a past that was not cheerful and somewhat discouraging. The result of this healing of memories brought about the release of who knows how much this woman carried who knows what within the recesses of her psyche. She had nothing to do with this demon but was the recipient of a past that mistreated her young life.
People who carry the same type of unattended demons within their own bodies from not adhering to correcting the past may also result in similar expressions of grief. Now we are not talking about some sin that is apparent, but the monsters of non-forgiveness either on our own part or the need to forgive someone whom we have hurt. There sometimes can be anger that has begun to burn a hole within the center of our own soul and the embers of fire must be extinguished. Those in this ministry have seen the results of healing and realize the Spirit of God is deeply involved.
Ralph B. Hathaway, Healing the Past.