I never knew this, but as I was speaking to a brother the other day and this phrase fell out of my mouth: our shame grieves the Holy Spirit. It shocked me and then it was used to pierce my heart too. Where at first I was only seeing this in my friend’s life, then it swung right back around and touched my own. I don’t even remember now what shame he was in because this double-edged sword touched the thigh of my own strength.
Our Shame Grieves
Shame is deep personal grief and our indwelt Spirit of Christ grieves when we are in shame. Wow! Shame is self-condemnation and usually has no foreseeable solution. It does something that humility doesn’t do, it castigates and imprisons. Shame is death to the soul of a man. And what’s more, shame only leads to more shame. Literally shame is shaming.
As I have said in recent posts, shame is believing things apart from God. Shame actually sets itself up as some authority of knowledge—essentially it decides. The problem is shame’s knowledge is so skewed and off. Shame discounts the Life, power and grace of Christ. On the contrary, shame poses as a “solution” to a problems rather than seeking our only Solution.
Jesus is the single Person who can resolve our sin and fallen condition, all-the-while shame touts itself as a counterfeit solver. Here’s the problem, shame’s answer is self-punishment. If left to run free, shame becomes judge, jury and executioner. This is a BIG problem!
Living in Shame
I can’t tell you how destructive shame has been in my life and in lives I’ve witnessed. Shame has held captive and caused a continuation of the shame-filled cycle. Everytime shame rears its ugly head then flesh comes in to solve shame’s mess. It does this by making a resolve that makes us feel empowered by fleshes strength. The problem is, flesh always fails and then we get triggered and shame results. Round and round it goes with no true solution.
For instance, we could have a childhood shame of abuse. It causes us great fear and feelings of being ashamed. Anytime that shame is triggered we might go to fear and shame. We are hopeless under the weight of shames control. There is no Savior in this scenario, it is just an endless cycle of shame. When Christ is excluded from our shame, shame is further empowered.
So why is shame my judge, jury and executioner? Because shame says I am irredeemable. Ultimately, it states I don’t just “do” something bad, I AM BAD! Shame relegates me to being shamed as my only solution. It promotes irredeemable thoughts. Shame holds me to self-hatred, self-condemnation, and self-contempt. The god in this scenario is Shame not Jesus. This is why shame must be crushed!
In my next post I want to share a personal shame I have struggled with recently, and how God is transforming it.