[quote=Marquette]Hi Lillith -
I was raised in a Baptist church but have been attending a Covenant church for the past 26 years. Usually when I pray I go by the “ACTS method”–
In the confession part of my prayer I usually ask the Lord to bring to my mind any sins that I am not aware I committed. To tell you the truth, many of my specific sins don’t even come to mind while I’m praying, but later something will pop into my mind “out of nowhere,” possibly even something from years ago that was wrong and I never confessed. (For several years I was what the Baptists would call a "Carnal Christian.) Even if nothing comes to mind, I ask for forgiveness because, “If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.” 1 John 1:8-10
As I’ve gotten older (I’m 58) I’ve found that if I picture Jesus sitting next to me on the couch watching tv, standing next to me as I talk to people, in the car as I drive, etc., I can avoid a lot of sins. Would I have Jesus watch this tv show? Would I want Jesus to see me shake my fist and swear at the guy who just cut me off? Would I say unkind words to the person I’m talking to with Jesus standing right there? Would I want Jesus reading the novel I’m reading?
As the old saying goes, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” My favorite verse to call to mind when tempted in something is Phillippians 4:8,9 “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, let your mind dwell on these things. The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, PRACTICE THESE THINGS, and the God of peace shall be with you.”
“Thanks to God for my Redeemer”
It is good that you hold yourself accountable by your constant awareness of God. Not many people can do this. Many of the early Church fathers called this “remembrance of death”. It could also be construed as a type of ceaseless prayer.
God Bless you!