It’s confession time.
As far back as I can remember, I have always felt shame for one thing or another.
I’ve felt shame for being a slow learner.
I’ve felt shame for being an honest person.
I’ve felt shame for not being good enough.
I felt shame for not fitting in.
I felt shame for not making friends easily.
I felt shame for having dark skin and slanted eyes.
I felt shame because I was placed in a special class to learn English.
I felt shame because I had to take speech class to learn how to say my S’s.
I felt shame because I spent recess hiding from the mean girls and boys.
I was ashamed of my name because people, even adults, poked fun at it.
I was ashamed for not having the right clothes.
I was ashamed for being a nerd.
I was ashamed because I didn’t fit in with the beautiful and the popular.
I was ashamed to be inadequate, awkward, unseen, and unknown.
I was ashamed for making stupid decisions.
I was ashamed for trusting the wrong people.
I was ashamed for not having courage.
I carried so much shame it was difficult to love myself. Shame prevented me from seeing anything that is right in me. Shame caused me to hate, reject, and judge myself. Shame made me want to be a different person. Shame buried me so deep it stole my self-esteem and self-worth. Shame robbed me of my created identity and made me a prisoner to its name.
Even still, I’m thankful for shame. Yes, thankful. For without shame, I wouldn’t have looked for God. I wouldn’t have gone searching for the freedom I was meant to live in. If I hadn’t known shame, I wouldn’t have realized I needed to be free from habits, things, people, and sins which held me back from the purpose I was made to fulfill.
I’m thankful for shame because it led me to Jesus.
Shame was my identity until Jesus came to me. He had already taken my shame upon Himself when He suffered and died for me. Jesus delivered me from all my shame and gave me a new name, a new identity.
Shame no longer controls me. God controls me because I belong to Him. I don’t identify with shame anymore. My identity, who I am, comes from what God says about me and not what I’ve done or what’s been done to me. My shameful days are over. I have a new name called Unashamed.
I guess you can say I’ve come out. I’ve come out of living behind and under shame. I’ve come out into the freedom of being who God has destined me to be and not who I or others have defined for me because of my ethnicity, background, upbringing, social status, personality, and intrinsic traits.
Because I am living and functioning how God designed me, I don’t need people’s affirmation and validation to know who I am. I no longer look for people’s approval for the confidence to be me. I don’t rely on or imitate influencers to find my identity. I know my identity comes from God alone, because He formed me and breathed life into my being.
I’m thankful shame is no longer my name.
Even when I’m rejected, ridiculed, or refused, I will remain Unashamed to be the me God made. For this, I’m thankful to have known shame.
Thank you Father God that those who look to you are unashamedly radiant and no shadow of shame will keep them hiding in darkness. (Psalm 34:5)