My ten year old daughter has just pillaged through her sisters drawers again and taken what she wanted without asking. She is arguing about not wanting to help unload the dishwasher, and in the same breath begging me to make her breakfast. I have had it! I yell out,
“You are so selfish!!!!!!!”
She yells right back at me, “I am not selfish, I am just acting selfish!”
This story is true. And now, I am happy to say we all survived our strong willed child’s growing up years. She is now 18 and getting ready to graduate, and go to nursing school.
When my daughter boomeranged those words back at me, it enlighted me to a deeper understanding of shame vs. guilt.
You see, guilt is something you do that you can ask forgiveness for.
Shame is who you are.
Our ten year old daughter understood this at such a young age. She would not take on the false image of living in shame that she was destined to be a selfish person. Instead she was acting in a VERY selfish way.
Shame is considered to be the swampland of our soul.
I am writing this post today with a desperate plea for you reading it to exam how you perceive your self.
How would you describe yourself?
The bible say’s you are made in the very image of God Himself.
He does not make mistakes.
You are a miracle, with so many gifts and unique strengths that the world is a better place because your in it.
Shame paralyzes you from allowing your true identity to come out. It is what blocks us from joy, fulfillment, and whole hearted living.
My husband, Eric just taught on this at our Friday night home church. He made the comparison of Peter who denied Jesus three times, vs. Judas who sold out Jesus for thirty pieces of silver. Both had shame and took it on as who they were. The difference was that Peter was able to walk away from it and follow Jesus again, while Judas took his own life and died in his shame.
If you are dealing with shame I would encourage you to shout out like my ten year old, what you are not. Replace it with the wonderful truth of who you are and then walk out and do the thing that is in your heart to do. Enjoy discovering the beautiful wonderful miracle you truly are.
I linked a powerful TED Talks about shame and vulnerability that you might enjoy as well.