A couple of weeks ago, I shared that our DML Global team gathers three days a week for prayer, following the ACTS format (Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, Supplication). In those sessions, I discovered a profound aspect of our team dynamics: the power of personal confession.
While prayer sessions typically involve acknowledging our collective shortcomings, we’ve found that confessing our own sins, individually, has been remarkably transformative. It’s a vulnerable experience, looking in the mirror before our colleagues. Doing it once a week is one thing, but engaging in this practice three days a week has allowed us to truly understand one another. We’ve become familiar with each other’s persistent struggles, or as we refer to them, our “thorns in the flesh.”
During one of these confession sessions, I had an enlightening moment. I realized that what we were often confessing was our own “shadow.” What does that mean exactly? Let me explain.
I believe every person is endowed with unique gifts and talents that, when combined with their network, culture, and community, create a distinctive contribution to the world. However, I also believe that every gift has a shadow—a potential for both light and darkness.
For instance, my strong inclination towards organization is a gift, but when it’s projected onto others or interferes with other valuable gifts, it starts casting a shadow. This, I believe, is true for most, if not all, gifts. How many of us have experienced a trait we once loved in someone becoming a source of frustration?
My revelation was realizing that the confessions I was hearing were part of the gifting in that person—a dimension I value in them. For example, a passionate team member often confessed struggles with anger, which is understandable given their passionate nature. Another person, appreciated for their logical approach to life, confessed a lack of sensitivity to their loved ones—a trait expected from someone with a cerebral approach.
The profound realization was that the more I get caught up in my gifting, the longer that shadow becomes. However, when Christ is central in my life, directly overhead, there is no shadow. I use my gift for Him, read the room, and recognize the place of my gift in relation to others.
My goal is to have no shadow, keeping my eyes focused on Him and not on myself. This brings us back to the hymn, “Great is Thy Faithfulness,” acknowledging that “there is no shadow of turning with thee; Thou changest not; thy compassions, they fail not; as thou hast been, thou forever will be.”
No shadow of turning.
My talent/gifting for His glory.
May God help me!