Adam and Eve lived naked and unashamed until they needed something beyond God. The day they needed more than God, shame entered in. This is tragic because we in this culture, and even in much of the church, have amassed so much stuff to our own demise. It now owns us. We are hoarding to our own detriment. Stuff has taken the place of our Lord and it is an epidemic.
This is not a post about asceticism or living paltry. This is a post about minimalism and being purposefully pared down to God and His Will. This doesn’t necessarily mean I have to throw out all my stuff. But what I have learned is stuff can take a place in my heart and moves God aside.
Shame and Being Unashamed
I have been talking about shame in my posts lately. Shame is a dark cloud over the Light of our lives. Shame prevents me from seeing and experiencing the joy of God. It separates me from His thoughts of me, tempting me to formulate my own. And inevitably those thoughts will be beneath God’s own thoughts of me. Shame separates me from the mind of Christ for me.
So how do shame and minimalism relate? Because too relegate myself to God, His thoughts and His Will I can live in an unashamed state. It is only when I look for more than God alone that I become ashamed. Shame is the addition of something beyond God and His Will.
The Mystery of Being Naked
The Garden experience with God was amazing. There were no need for clothes, God’s thoughts clothed Adam and Eve. It was only when they were tempted to know apart from God, that they gained the shame of their nakedness. Our original parents needed more than God alone, they needed one more thing and with that choice they excluded themselves from His safety.
Satan presents something beyond God and our agreement brings death. Our amassing our “more than” scorns God as our provision. Our stuff becomes our strange God. It isn’t like our God doesn’t want us to have His provision. He just wants to be our supply and not supplanted by Him with our discontent. What a lesson!
There is nothing like living naked and unashamed and this doesn’t necessarily have to do with clothes. As with Adam and Eve, the concept of their nakedness was internal more than external. Their shame came from the internal nakedness of their separation from God. We live naked and unashamed in sheer vulnerability to God. Their hiding was of the shame of their choice not the exposure of their bodies. The external clothing was just a statement of the internal shame.
So how do we live without shame this side of the fall? We walk and live open hearted to Him, His Ways and Mind. This is a top to bottom vulnerability. And we can live completely covered by Him NOW. This is my goal! I never want to live in the shame I have walked in much of my life. Shame has only separated me from knowing Him and experience Him deeply.
Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.
Phil 4:11-13 NLT