Blame says, “I did wrong.” Rightly understood, blame is not a bad thing. Accepting our part and confessing our sins is part of keeping the slate clean and walking in love and truth.
Shame says, “I am wrong, faulty, substandard, and to be blamed because I’m bad.”
No amount of impassioned apology will shake shame. Shame clings to the soul like a chain holding the shamed to their mistakes.
Shame piles the perfections of others, their stock of success, and ensures that the shadow of their magnificence casts its darkness over your shaky self-esteem. They (whoever they may be) are so much better than you. You’re a failure. They (whoever they may be) have it all sussed out. We speak of pandemics. Shame is pervasive, the stock of hell unleashed on the soul of humanity. You are an underperforming embarrassment.
Shame hides the wonder of God’s image behind fig leaves of performance.
Shame shows up in all manner of pretense, dancing for the crowds like a shackled beast robbed of dignity.
Shame drives you to hide your light under a bushel afraid of what others might say.
Shame keeps its leash short. But not even the devil himself can keep you from the prayer closet!
In the place of prayer, we shake the shame.
Stepping across the threshold of the heavenly sanctuary, coming through the door of the cross, washing in the Word, shaves shame fully from the soul. Bathed in the blood of Jesus, more refreshing than summer rain, our soul is purged and the prince of this world, satan, and his schemes, are rendered powerless in the Presence of God.
So pure, so wholly worthy, we are invited into the holy place, there to fellowship with Father, Son, and Spirit.
The snake of shame and its poisonous accusations are shaken off and trodden underfoot.
Here, in the intimate, warm, embrace of God, the words are heard, “accepted,” worthy,” “whole,” and “holy”.
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