I'm not proud of my old life. And I'm also not proud of some things in my life after Christ, even up unto the last several months. Things that cause us shame can be a continuous onslaught against the vitality Christ promises.
I don't discuss my shame with most others because I don't want to be associated with that part of my former life, or viewed by others through those past/current failures.
Being in ministry full-time, I have to give testimony. So I speak about my life experiences in general terms. I admit being in dangerous and abusive relationships, worshipping false idols, experiencing deep depression, being self-absorbed, trapped for too long in strongholds built by intimidating people that successfully coerced me to do their bidding through gaslighting tactics and deflecting their shame on me.
Life is messy. The warfare is real. The onslaught intense.
Is this resonating?
There have been many layers of shame to heal in me, and, for protection, I do hide those details from others.
But I don't hide them from Jesus.
From my experience, few others can be trusted to NOT use my shame against me.
But Christ CAN BE trusted to NEVER humiliate and expose me and heap abuses upon me.
He has a clear promise that those who look to Him, their faces are radiant✨. Their faces are NEVER covered in shame, Psalm 34:5.
What is this radiance the psalmist speaks of? It is likened to the dancing sheen of a flowing stream, i.e. the life forces of God flowing within, shining through you, beaming as an unquenchable light, reflecting like a sparkle, being cheerful.
Is this what you see when you catch your reflection unexpectedly?
Too many draw back or hide from God because they believe His gaze upon them is a microscopic view to magnify every flaw. Many feel dirty or unworthy, far from radiant.
What about you?
Do you feel the weight of guilt and shame at the mention of God? Afraid, the nearer you get to His presence, the heat of condemnation, the "ick" of sin will be a stench that rises?
Many feel this especially if in an active stronghold of sin. So to avoid perceived disappointment and expected chastisement from God, we wrongly reason that by staying away, the crippling feelings of shame will diminish. But, the opposite is true, it is only exacerbated.
Distance doesn't heal. Distance doesn't erase reality. Distance doesn't cover the skeletons in the closet of your soul that travel with you. Distance is death-knell to healing shame. It only perverts your perceptions of who He is.
"Who He is? Don't you mean who we are?"
God's word reveals to us that shame is not healed by looking more closely at our flaws. Shame is healed by seeking Him, asking to be rescued, by taking our eyes off ourselves and looking at Him.
Psalm 34:4-5 I sought the Lord, and he answered me;
he delivered me from all my fears.
Those who look to him are radiant;
their faces are never covered with shame.
Look to Him. Take your eyes off your shame and instead look at His. His?! YES!
Hebrews 12:2- Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the SHAME, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
He endured YOUR shame, walked out a sentence of humiliating exposure before God the Father and his enemies and casual observers and family and friends and followers. His shame trumps all other shame.
Yet He despised it, thinking little or nothing of it. His eye was on seeing you set free. Jesus was focused on the joy of you being healed, of His radiance✨ resting on your face!
So if trapped by shame, realize the path to freedom is drawing near to the face of Jesus and looking closely at the details of His sacrifice for you. He will heal you and set your free!
Click here to listen to Thoughtful Thursday's episode on Psalm 34:4-7. Those who look to Him are radiant!
Draw near! Practice His presence! Use the simple prayer exercises available Monday through Friday on PEACE BE STILL DAILY PRAYER DOWNLOAD to see Him more clearly. The podcast is found on all podcast and music apps! 80% of our listeners use Apple podcasts to listen, then Podbean, then Spotify! Blessings in His presence!
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Prayer is Gift!
Hi my name is Gina; and I'm the founder of the ministry. My 25 year journey with God has been centered on immersing myself in the safe relationship God offers, learning about the power of surrender, and praying for His life in greater measure!