I was given a devotional by some dear friends for my birthday this year. Its a 60 day one taking the reader through a process of finding abundance in their relationship with God. Today’s topic is shame. I was simply amazed to read this and not shut down inside. Shame has been my most crippling item left with me from the abuse of my past. The author of this devotional, Ann Voskamp–a Canadian, talks about their adopted child who came from a foreign country. As a very young child she’d had heart surgery so she has a very large scar in the center of her chest. Ann had taught her that this scar is her “brave”.
Scars are our reminders of great surgery God does to bring life. Shame is an open wound filled with infection (shame) in our emotions which we try to protect by building rigid walls around it. Boy, do I know this well. We learn to lash out in all different kinds of ways when one comes close to opening this wound. Over the years I’ve learned to speak this shame which has allowed the wound to begin healing. I didn’t know how much the healing had taken place until I read this devotional. As a child no one told me that “the different” I was from dad and many of my brothers was on purpose. The shame I felt from all the criticism and abuse taught me a lesson God has now largely replaced. God’s lesson is what scripture has been trying to teach each of us. God does not make mistakes. He creates us with purpose and meaning from the beginning. He wants man to reinforce that with man but Satan has a much different plan. He does just what happened to me and so many others working to destroy the good of us and then to try and hide it with walls of rigidity. Those are pretty much gone now. How I thank God for this–The freedom to be who God created us to be is what God wants for us because then we can do for Him all He asks of us. God is incredibly AMAZING!