Shame is a PAINFUL emotion caused by a strong sense of guilt, embarrassment, unworthiness, or disgrace. Shame can easily lurk in the shadows of our hearts. Depending upon the act or acts we commit that cause us to be ashamed, this strong emotion can easily become a fixture in our lives that pops up like an univited pimple right before prom. It loves to periodically remind us how stupid we were, are, or could be in the future.
Tonight, I don’t write this blog with any divine revelation. I still have questions on this topic and I am searching for answers in the Word. After meditating on this topic all day, I have reached two conclusions:
1. Not all shame is bad. Shame is an emotion that convicts me and causes me to turn away from sin and back to God.
2. Shame, if not realized for what it is and dealt with, can make me feel useless for the work of the Lord. Therefore, I become a waste of perfectly good yearbook space in Heaven High.
I would be willing to make an astounding assumption that 100% of us have experienced the emotion of shame. Even at a young age, I am sure we can remember moments of embarrassment or dumb decisions that catapulted us into the arena of shame. While I type this, my mind is being flooded with moments of time in my life where I was ashamed. Whether is was my attitude, my behavior, or my involvement in a less than stellar activity, a strong sense of disgrace creeped, okay let’s be honest, came in like a FLOOD.
Honestly, I am thankful for the emotion of shame that causes me to change my attitude, my behavior, or my involvement. Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 7:11, “Just see what this godly sorrow produced in you! Such earnestness, such concern to clear yourselves, such indignation, such alarm, such longing to see me, such zeal, and such a readiness to punish wrong. You showed that you have done everything necessary to make things right.” Godly sorrow should lead us all to repentance!
Then, once we have repented, we should LIVE FREE from Shame. Let’s be honest though, freedom from shame is a process or an emotion that we may need to defeat on a daily basis. As we walk out that process, the uninvited “outbreaks” will be fewer and farther between. Nevertheless, we can’t let even a shadow of shame from something that has already been placed under the blood of Jesus darken our faces.
He is the LIFTER OF OUR HEADS. We can remove the mask of shame and lift our heads in confidence that He has made all things new in our lives. And, instead of seeing our past as shameful, we can see it as a story that He can use to minister to others.
If shame becomes your state of being instead of a moment that leads to correction, you will never see purpose in your past mistakes. You will constantly hide in shame’s shadow. I truly believe that God never wastes a hurt. He never wastes a scar. And, He never misses an opportunity to take your “mess” and make it a “message.” So, look to Him for help and be radiant with Joy!
Psalm 34:5 Those who look to him for help will be radiant with joy; no shadow of shame will darken their faces.
My 28 Thanks:
1. This is the day that the Lord has made.
2. I can be radiant with Joy.
3. God forgives me of my past, my present, and will forgive me in my future.
5. His mercies are new everyday.
6. I don’t have to do anything to earn His forgiveness, His grace, and His mercy.
7. He is the Lifter of my Head.
8. I don’t have to hide in the shadow’s of shame.
9. Judah threw up several time through out the night. I hate when my baby is sick. But, Gary and I make an incredible team of nurses.
10. Judah felt so much better this morning.
11. Judah was so happy that I spent the morning at home with him.
12. I have a job that lets me work from home when situations out of my control come up.
13. I got a lot accomplished today.
14. Starla made me laugh several times today. She is a funny person.
15. Gary and Judah played in the rain.
16. I talked with my neighbor tonight. She told me that she saw Gary and Judah playing in the rain. She thought it was so sweet.
17. Coversations with Pastor Marcia and Dorothy are enlighting, fun, and refreshing.
18. There was a kick in my step today.
19. I have had a song in my heart all day.
20. Judah said some really funny things today that made both Gary and I laugh out loud.
21. Judah asked me to tell him a Bible story tonight.
22. I got to tell him the story of David and Goliath. I added some pretty cool sound effects.
23. Dinner was amazing.
24. Gary and I have personally challenged ourselves to stop eating out so much. We have been saving so much money with this one simple adjustment.
25. Eating at home is healthier too.
26.I finished Jon Acuff’s book, Start, tonight.
27. Some friends left for a much needed vacation today. I am believing that it is a time of refreshment.
28. The Word of God.