I used to know a girl that lived her life in shame. She lost her innocence as a child and was told it was her fault. She was accused countless times for things she never did. She was abandoned and filled with guilt; she blamed herself for all of it. She hurt herself and hurt others. She lived a disguised life. She was judged by others for her actions. She allowed shame to be her god and she served it daily; every decision was made through the shame that ran her life.
That girl was me.
More than once I had the opportunity to date good, godly men and instead, I went back to a guy that treated me lower than dirt. Why? Because I was full of shame; I felt like I didn’t deserve anything better than dirt so I acted that way. I remember having one true friend in high school that was always there for me. When I found out I was pregnant the first time, she was the first one at my house bawling her eyes out. She couldn’t understand why I kept going back to a guy that treated me so poorly. Instead of me listening to her and apologizing for lying to her, I left home and lived with the guy. We haven’t been close since.
Let me tell you first hand from experience: shame will steal your joy, put you in bondage, force you to settle, and denies all the bible says about you. Shame is a nasty spirit that
can will ruin your life if it’s not destroyed.
So how did I finally become free from the bondage of shame? I let go of the chains that bound me so tightly and quit listening to the lies saying that I was less than. It took a long time for me to completely let go. The moment I started allowing God’s Word define me, is the day I took the first step in conquering shame. Slowly, day by day, God so graciously reminded of how loved I am. Any time I felt weighted by the choices I made in my past, I would redirect my thoughts to scripture. I believe the only way to overcome shame is by giving it to God. Shame is a self-destructive, low self-esteem, guilty, and condemning way of life. Hence, that’s why it’s so easy to stay stuck in it. Shameful people tend to feel like they don’t deserve better, so why try to overcome it and receive a better life.
Before I came to know Christ, I used to believe the answer to beating shame was destroying life itself. I didn’t want to be alive anymore. When I say every choice made was directed by shame, I mean it… every. single. choice. I abandoned others and myself. I was hopeless.
But there’s good news! There IS hope! The bible straight up tells us that our shame and disgrace will be no more when we give our lives to Christ. If you need some reminding of what God did for YOU, read the bible. The creator of the world; the one who molded you in the womb; the author of love; our savior… He did something so magnificent for YOU. Here are some scriptures you should fill your mind with daily. Quit listening to the lies that you’re not good enough, or that you don’t deserve better. Quit believing your past is what defines your future. You’re a creation made in the likeness of Christ… Start listening to THAT.
“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
“Instead of your shame you will receive a double portion, and instead of disgrace you will rejoice in your inheritance. And so you will inherit a double portion in your land, and everlasting joy will be yours.”
– Isaiah 61:7
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”
– 1 John 1:9
“The King is enthralled by your beauty.”
– Psalm 45:11
“He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west.”
– Psalm 103:12
“Do not remember the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways; according to your love remember me, for you, Lord, are good.”
– Psalm 25:7