Just the other day I was led to listen to a specific worship session and at the end of the session Paul Manwaring (A pastor affiliated with Bethel Church, California and one of my favourite preachers) came on to close the session. It ended with Him beginning to minister to this dreaded thing called: SHAME. As he ministered something awakened in my own Spirit to the fact that I too am walking with SHAME. It was as if a fresh realization hit me that the enemy is using this very area to hold me back and prevent me from walking in the full and abundant life that Papa God has ordained for me.
Now if you had asked me if I thought that I am walking with shame, I would have answered with confident assurance… Me? … No, I don’t think shame is one of my struggles!! There are other areas that I am aware of that need work in my life but I would not have considered shame to be one of those areas.
Let us look at what SHAME is according to the Merriam -Webster Dictionary:
“A painful emotion caused by consciousness of guilt, shortcoming, or impropriety.
A condition of humiliating disgrace or that brings censure or reproach.
Something to be regretted”
The definition of SHAME according to Paul Manwaring (This is one I really like):
“Shame tells you, who and what you are not and it keeps you from the ONE voice who can tell you who you really are.
Shame also makes us believe we are less than.”
This specific definition of shame is what brought me into a revelation that there is a shame issue in my heart and in my life. It made me realize that the enemy is keeping me in a place of bondage, as I am believing the lies that he is throwing at me and this, in turn, is holding me back from all that God has ordained for my journey. You see shame holds us back and hinders our ability to move forward. Shame is so subtle so we are not always able to recognize it but we need to know that shame is definitely NOT of God!
Here are a few lies that the enemy has used in my own life:
- I am not good enough at XYZ
- I am not deserving enough
- I am not thin enough
- I not worthy enough
- I am not a good enough writer and there are others that write so much better, so why bother to write.
- I am not creative enough
- I am not talented enough
The Holy Spirit began to reveal that these are some of the lies that the enemy uses but there are many other lies that can be added to the above list. This list may look a bit different for each one but the fact remains that as long as the enemy can use these lies against us, it will hinder our progress. I am reminded of all the times I have looked around and weighed my value against somebody else’s standard or opinion. Many of us may even look to the world, to find our worth but this leaves us feeling ashamed or humiliated.
Now, this is an amazing TRUTH… where others have cast us out of their stories, The King of the universe has cast us into HIS STORY and that alone is ENOUGH! As we begin to fix our eyes on the one who is worthy, who is Jesus, we begin to be transformed into His image. We begin to see from His perspective and the lies that we have believed and partnered with, begin to melt away. Yes, we might not have all the answers but we know the one who does. Jesus is the only one who can pour out His truth over us and this shatters and covers the nakedness of our shame.
Here are some of God’s truths that He pours out upon our lives:
- I am worthy because He calls me worthy (Colossians 1:12)
- I am His beloved (Song of Songs 6:3)
- I am a child of God (John 1:12)
- I am loved (Romans 8:38-39)
- I am beautiful (Song of Songs 4:7)
- I have been redeemed (Isaiah 43:1)
- I am fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14)
We as children of God have been cast into a “kingdom story”. It will often look very different to the worlds way of doing things and at times it may look upside down but just know that each of us has a lead role to play in this “kingdom story”. The Lord himself writes each of our stories and it is perfect in every way. I can assure you that each of our stories will look very different as we are created uniquely and therefore our journeys will be a demonstration of the Fathers authenticity. You do not have to act like or be like anyone else, God really wants you to be the best “YOU” that you can be as He is all about “original” design. Jesus wants to set us free from shame, so release it to Him today and watch as you begin to live your best life yet.
P.S. Be assured that nothing we have done, is too big or too bad for God. He wants to come and redeem those areas in our lives as well.
If you are struggling with shame, here is a prayer that you can pray:
Lord Jesus, I acknowledge today that I am struggling with shame. Please forgive me for partnering with shame and the lie that I am not enough. Today I choose to partner with your truth that I am worthy and that you have an amazing plan and purpose for my life. Holy Spirit please begin to show me how you see me so I can replace the lies I have believed with your truth. Amen!