Encouragement for Today - June 21, 2005


June 21

Encouragement for Today

(Principal 1)  


“The Shame of It All”

Wendy Pope, Director of Development, Proverbs 31 Speaker Team Member



Key Verse:


Genesis 3:17, “And as they ate it, suddenly they became aware of their nakedness, and were embarrassed.  So they strung fig leaves together to cover themselves around the hips.” (TLB)





A little deception has gone a long way, hasn’t it? The old deceiver has gotten a lot of mileage out of the shame tactic and it saddens my heart to know that it is still one of his most successful tricks.  As I see it, we are victims of circumstance.  As a result of the sin of Adam and Eve, we are cursed with a natural tendency of sin and shame.  It is part of our makeup.  It is part of who we are.  I was reminded the other day of the power of shame by something that happened when my little boy and I were working around the house.


My little boy is a “man’s man.”  He loves to “help” with any project involving tools.  This particular day, I was sanding some spots on the walls that had been spackled, preparing them to be painted.  Griffin, of course, had to have his own sandpaper.  Since he was doing an excellent job, I went to work on another spot behind the couch. 


As I pulled the couch from the wall, I noticed a piece of broken red plastic.  Since Griffin was so busy, I decided not to distract him with questions about my discovery.  Pulling the couch out further from the wall, I saw Griffin’s fireman’s mask, broken.  I had to say something to him about it. Griffin,” I said, “Your fireman’s mask is broken.”  He answered without looking at me, “Yea, I know.”  I couldn’t believe his reaction.  This was one of his most favorite toys.  Since he did not want to discuss it, I decided to let it go.  We continued to work.


A few minutes later the Holy Spirit prompted me with the word shame.  I realized my Griffin had broken his mask and hidden it from me.  I had him crawl up in my lap to talk about what had happened to his mask.  Without looking in my eyes, he confessed that he had broken the mask.  I asked him why he put the mask under the couch.  He said, “Because I did not want you to see it.”  He had done something wrong and was ashamed.  I assured him that he could always come to me when he had done something wrong.  I encouraged him to never hide truth from me in fear that I would not love him anymore or that I would not forgive him.


I did not have to teach my son shame; he was born with it, just like you and me.  Well, we don’t have to be victims anymore.  Praise God!  The penalty that Jesus paid on Calvary assures of this: shame doesn’t have to define us or bind us.  God sent His Son so that we might have a life of abundance and freedom.  2 Peter 1:3 says, “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness” (NIV).  The key to our freedom is knowledge of Him.  Our knowledge of Him gives us power and this power helps us choose not to live in the bondage of shame. 


Just like Griffin, you do not have to be ashamed of what you have done.  You never have to hide the truth from God in fear that He will not love you anymore or that He will not forgive you.  Crawl up in His lap, experience His tender loving care, and accept His forgiveness.



My Prayer for Today:


Father, I come now, asking You to forgive me for the time I have wasted living in shame when You paid such a high price for my freedom.  Today, I am going to believe I am free and live like I am free.  Help me to be disciplined enough to spend time growing in the knowledge of Your Word which gives me everything that I need for life and godliness.  In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen.



Application Steps:


Write 2 Peter 1:3 on several index cards, personalizing it with your name. (i.e. Lord, I know that Your power is divine and has given me everything….)  Place the cards in places that you will see them everyday (i.e. bathroom mirror, refrigerator, dashboard of your car, computer).  Recite the verse each time you see it.  Keep a copy in your purse, for emergencies.



Reflection Points: 


Have I asked for God’s forgiveness for this “thing” that gives me shame?


Is there someone I need to confront or reconcile with as a result of today’s devotion?


Will my life be different after today’s prayer and devotion time?


Power Verses: 


2 Timothy 1:7, "For God did not give a spirit of timidity but a spirit of power, love, and self discipline." (NIV)

Psalm 52:10, "Create in me a clean heart, O God and put a new and right spirit within me.” (RVS)


Romans 6:6-7, “For we know that our old self was crucified with Him so that the body of sin might be rendered powerless, that we should no longer be slaves to sin because anyone who has died has been freed from sin.” (NIV)


Galatians 5:1, “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.” (NIV)



Additional Resources:


Who Holds the Key to Your Heart, by Lysa TerKeurst



The Ultimate Makeover, by Sharon Jaynes



Lysa’s Testimony (on tape or CD), by Lysa TerKeurst


Originally published Tuesday, 21 June 2005.