Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. - James 5:16 NIV
At first, it is not apparent the connection James is making between confession and healing. Does that mean that we're sick because we've sinned? Although some of our sins could lead to physical sickness, he is talking about sin sickness. Like physical sickness, though, when we are not feeling our best, we need the prayers of the saints to intercede for us.
Why do we need to confess our sins? Those praying on our behalf don't need the nitty-gritty details (that is between you and God); however, they need to know how to help you in prayer. That is why we spend considerable time each week in joys and concerns, sharing what is going on in our lives. Following this is a time for us to pray for each other.
Also, in the United Methodist tradition, we regularly share in prayers of confession. It is our time of admission to God and each other humbly admitting we have struggled and failed. Acknowledging our failures is more than okay; it is healthy. Also, in our confession is the plea for God's help and our earnest pledge to do better.
God, of healing, we come before you now in confession. We are sick in sin. We have spurned your love, we have not obeyed your law, and we have not loved our neighbors. Please forgive us, heal us, make us pure, and help us in our resolve to do better. We pray this in the name of our intercessor, your Son Jesus Christ. Amen.