Finding the Freedom of Forgiveness in a Culture of Shame
Shame may temporarily modify one’s actions, but it inevitably pushes people away from God.
“You ought to be ashamed of yourself” is a phrase I have both heard and (I regret to say) said to others, including my own children.
The truth is most people are already draped in a heavy, self-woven blanket of shame. Heaping more shame on an already weary soul leaves them demoralized and without hope.
Jesus never left people without hope. What is the gospel if not the removal and lifting of the weight of shame?
The most influential believer in all of history, the Apostle Paul, had a strategy to keep him from shaming others – he just kept reminding himself of who he once was.
“The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost. But I received mercy…
1 Timothy 1:15-17 ESV
Shame is self-perpetuating. Those who shame others do so so out of their own battle with it.
How can we walk in the freedom of forgiveness in a culture of shame?
- Don’t just remember your sin, remember God’s mercy, by which you have been forgiven! If you only remember your sin you are feeding into your shame. Remember, while you were still in sin, Christ came and forgave you!
- Instead of judging someone else’s sin according to the Law of God, see that person from the perspective of the Love of God. Loving someone in their sin does not justify their sin, it gives them the hope of freedom and forgiveness!
- Refuse shame – from others, from the enemy, and from yourself! Shame is the shout of satan; God whispers mercy.
Father- Thank You for removing my sin and shame by your mercy! Amen.