At the conclusion of my recent sermon Looking for Light in the Darkness, I made this statement: “There is one thing, above all other things that will keep you from rising and pressing on in the midst of your suffering. That thing is shame.” Brené Brown, author and researcher on shame says that “Shame is the most powerful, master emotion…it corrodes the very part of us that believes we are capable of change.”
It’s possible that many of us have a serious shame problem and aren’t even aware of it.
Recently, Scott Sauls the Senior Minister of Christ Presbyterian Church in Nashville, wrote an article that so eloquently and powerfully articulates that fight many of us have with shame. In it he opened with this e-mail from one of his church members. Maybe you can relate.
Can I be honest with you? Can I share with you about some of the demons that haunt me? It feels risky to say these sorts of things to my pastor, but here goes…
I doubt my love for Jesus, sometimes I don’t think I really love him at all. I wonder if I’m just playing a game, going through the motions because I enjoy being around Christians. Almost like I’m saying I love Jesus but maybe this is just a strategy to have Christian friends. Sometimes I feel like a well-intended fraud. This terrifies me. I fear being invisible to people I enjoy, irrelevant to my church and my friends, disconnected from my family, and that what I have to offer will be dismissed. I fear that I’m an outsider to things I really want to be part of.
Jane’s struggle was rooted in shame. Pastor Scott Sauls expounds more on the root of Jane’s shame (our shame too) and our response to it in this ARTICLE.
It’s everything I could have hoped to have written on the subject. I believe it will encourage you in the pursuit of light.