Shame is not Welcome here!
I’m an adjunct instructor at a local university. I say that with a little fear and trembling because I am still unsure of myself in the classroom. Thankfully, I have had some of the best and brightest graduate students ever and I love my new role.
Every time I give a test I have a moment of angst. I ask myself, “Have I prepared the students well enough?” I try to ensure my test is fair and covers valuable material … the pertinent stuff that will one day make each student successful in the field of Communication Science Disorders.
As I was passing out the most recent test, I heard one of my students remark about how nervous she was. I immediately said, “Don’t be nervous. It is a fair test. The material on the test is the very basis of your future profession. You should be ashamed if you don’t know the material.”
As soon as I said this, I knew I was wrong. Shaming is never an acceptable course of action. As we are all sinners, shame is the low-hanging fruit that Satan often uses to beat us up and keep us hiding in sin. We should never discipline from a platform of shame. There are plenty enough opportunities for shame to move into our hearts; we don’t need to help its destructive work by swinging open the door and welcoming it in.
I immediately back-peddled the remark and followed with, “This test is a learning experience, and if you don’t know this material, I promise you will before the semester is over. So, everyone relax and let’s see how well I’ve done in instructing you 😊.”
SHAME IS NOT WELCOME! Do not make shame a welcomed member of your house of emotions. But if shame has moved in, start packing its bags and show it to the door. We can tolerate pain, heart ache and sadness, but shame almost drowns us. Most shame is in response to sin. We know we have done or said something we shouldn’t have, but we are too chicken to apologize and make it right. This is often evident in our marriages. When one or both spouses are feeling shamed, the love, the joy and the peace go running! But we need to take on these feelings of shame head on – if God does not shame us, we have no business doing it either.
I love the heart of David the psalmist. He was every bit as sinful as the rest of us; more so than some. But each time that David confessed, he received forgiveness and kept on praising God! His 34th Psalm is one of my favorites and is one that my husband and I have committed to memory. The fifth verse in that Psalm says, “Those who look to Him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame.” When we look to God and repent, He is faithful and just to forgive (1 John 1:9). Then in our forgiven and cleaned state, we reflect God’s glory! Hallelujah! That is some good news. Share this with your spouse.
Spend some time today together with your spouse in prayer. Ask God to reveal the sins that have invited shame into your hearts and home, and then pray them out! Give each other permission to hold the issue accountable and enjoy the joy of pursuing holiness together!
Stay Washed in the Word, and keep reading!
“There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.”