‘The man asked him, “What is your name?” “Jacob,” he answered.’ Genesis 32:27 NIV
Change happens through confession. When he identified himself as ‘Jacob’, which means ‘deceiver’, Jacob was acknowledging his character flaws. This is an important part of God’s process for changing us, because we never change until we honestly face and admit our faults, sins, weaknesses, and mistakes. We need to say, ‘Lord, I have a problem, I’m in a mess and I admit I made it.’ Then God can go to work. Ever noticed how easy it is to make excuses? We become experts at blaming others and saying things like, ‘It’s not my fault, you know. It’s the environment I was brought up in—my parents are to blame.’ Or, ‘The situation I’m in at work is because of my boss.’ Why do we act and talk this way? Because it’s hard to admit our personal faults and failings, and it can be scary to ask for help. Why do we need to confess our faults to God? To let Him know what’s going on? No: He already knows that! When we tell God we’ve sinned, it is no surprise to Him; He knew our problems all along. We confess to Him because He wants us to say, ‘You’re right, God; I have a problem. I’ve blown it.’ It is humbling to admit our mistakes, but once we do, God gives us access to His power to help change us for the better. And at that point we start to become the person we’ve always wanted to be. The truth is: God loves you just the way you are—but He loves you too much to leave you that way.