A few nights ago I came face to face with my past. A past that was so far off in the distance I had imagined it would never return to my present. I was wrong. Why had it returned? Why now? I’d like to tell you have the complete answer for that, but I do not.
However, when I saw my past standing before me shame engulfed my entire being. I wanted to run and hide, literally, in my dream I ran from what was in front of me. I just wanted to get away from a past I had all but forgotten about. I could feel the eyes of judgement looming into my very soul. I felt completely trapped in the moment crying out for a way of escape. How could this be happening??
The truth is, I had turned the page on that chapter of my life, as far as I was concerned, it was a chapter I had moved past. I mean, no one has to tell me that God has forgiven me, I know this!! I tell others about God’s redemption, grace, and mercy. Why am I here? Why have I been brought to this place again? I thought we are overcomers by the blood of the lamb and the word of our testimony” and I had done that, you know, made my past a testimony. I had overcome the insecurity and compromise that allowed me to be prey to sin and shame. The shame I felt in that moment was greater than the shame I had felt all those years ago. Was it that I understood better at this moment in my life what happens when we compromise God’s standard for the acceptance of our world? Maybe…
When I’d had enough, I began fighting to wake myself from this nightmare. I couldn’t bare the heaviness any longer. I was so relieved to be awake I thought it would all go away, but guess what, it didn’t. That garment of shame was still hanging on to me. I began to cry out to God, fighting to feel the peace that normally resided in my spirit. I couldn’t carry this shame any longer. It hurt- I was broken. I just wanted relief- I wanted it to go away.
I found relief…
Titus 3:5 He saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy. He washed away our sins, giving us new birth and new life through the Holy Spirit.
To be honest, I’m still reflecting and sorting through what all God was trying to communicate to me through this dream, but what I see so far is this:
- We don’t have to carry the shame of our past because Jesus paid the price for our sins on the cross.
- We can live victorious over the enemy by not allowing him to remind us of who we used to be.
- We can make an amends for the wrong we have done.
- Finally, we can share our story of forgiveness with others. Let your mess become a message of hope for someone else.
I’m just wondering if there are those of you that struggle with shame. You wake up everyday feeling shame and guilty. You go to bed every night not able to forgive yourself or others for the wrong committed. Maybe the peace I wrote about is so far from where you are it’s like a foreign language you’ve never encountered. Maybe the part about Jesus paying the highest price for your shame makes no sense, but if it were possible you desperately need it! Then I want to remind you of a few things…
Jesus loves you no matter what! It says in the bible He dances over you, He prays for you, it even says He has a plan and a purpose for your life, it’s a good plan. It is not a plan for you to stay living in shame. Not only did Jesus pay the highest price on the cross, He now reigns in Heaven. What if I told you that God knew what you were going to walk through and He’s your biggest cheerleader? He want’s you to live a life free of shame and guilt. God loves you and wants the very best for you.
This is certain, life will not be without trouble, but it is possible to walk in peace. God has made that available to you and me.
When was the last time you talked to God about your shame? When was the last time you asked God to take the burden of guilty and shame from your life? God has already made a way of escape, Jesus. He truly paid for your freedom. Don’t live another moment in shame and despair. When the enemy comes along to remind you of your past you remind him of his future (the enemy IS defeated) and your freedom, the freedom Jesus paid for with his life.