Shame

“When you experience God’s grace, you will move closer to your target; the closer you are, the greater your chances of hitting the mark.”

Walter W. Swinhoe, M. Div, Crazy or Not, Here I Come

Shame.

When you read the word, it sits heavy on your chest. Your breathing stops for a second and you glance down at the floor as you recall all that which causes the feeling. You want to hide yourself from others, to escape that heaviness, to distract yourself with things…that often cause more layers of shame to form on top of what was already there.

But running away isn’t the answer. Moving closer to the One who created you is.
Shame isn’t from the Father who loves you beyond measure.

No – shame is the tool of a very real enemy in a spiritual battle that rages just out of sight. The enemy’s plan is to keep you away from your target; to move you away from your God and render you useless as you dwell alone in your misery. But what if you let it go?

“A survivor’s posture before God is not intended to be one of penance but of dependence on your Deliverer and the binder of your wounds.”

Jennifer Ji-Hye Ko, A Lamenter’s Pathway to Joy

We are imperfect human beings. Our flaws are plentiful. Like small children learning to walk, we will fall down time and time again. But we have a Perfect and Good Father who is waiting for us to rest in His arms as we express our pain, anger, and frustration at falling down once again…to pour out to Him whatever it is that we hold in our hearts at the time of our failures.

Similarly, when the world steals from us that which we hold dear, He allows us space and grace enough to grieve within His presence. He is okay with you expressing it in ways that others might think inappropriate simply because it makes them uncomfortable. I promise you, He is big enough to handle a wild range of emotion and will still be ready to hug you when you’re done. I’ve tested Him on it.

Don’t let the enemy keep you from a thriving relationship with God by weighing you down with shame. Take it to the Father who still waits for you with open arms, ready to lift your burden. Ready to sit beside you wherever you are in the moment and then carry you to where you need to be. Inviting you into relationship with Him. Only He can clean shame out of your spirit so that blessings can fill the cavities left behind and then overflow in abundance to a hurting world around you. He longs to heal you of the wounding of shame.

Won’t you move closer to the mark?
Won’t you please surrender your heart to Him and rest?

“Those who look to Him are radiant, and their faces shall never be ashamed.”

Psalm 34:5, ESV

“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

Matthew 11:29-30, ESV

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