April 24, 2018

Free of Shame

Romans 8:28-39

What . . . shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?

—  Romans 8:31

Shame is a heavy burden. Shame weighs us down and hinders us from being who God has intended us to be. Sometimes shame is raw like an open wound—and with terrifying memories. We can also carry shame for years, living with insecurities, fears, and a sense of self-disdain because of hurtful actions and exchanges from long ago. Shame holds us down with the weights of judgment, condemnation, expectations, disapproval, and more.

The freedom of resurrection life in Jesus, however, releases the burden of shame in our lives. Jesus carried our shame to the cross. He was betrayed, beaten, humiliated, and exposed, giving up his life to pay for our sin so that we might be released from the tyranny and shame of sin. Through Jesus’ death and resurrection, when we ask God for forgiveness, we are forgiven. God’s love frees us to let go of the ugliness of the past and move forward in confidence, knowing “there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1). And nothing can separate us from God’s love.

Learning to live in the confidence and acceptance of this new identity takes some time to figure out. While you work through the process, know that God is on your side, desiring that you live in the freedom and fullness of understanding who you are as a holy and dearly loved child of God.

Lord, the burden of our shame from things we have done, said, or experienced pulls us away from you. Help us live fully in the confidence and freedom of your love. Amen.

About the author — Laurie Zuverink

Laurie Zuverink is an ordained pastor who has served in several capacities of ministry in the Grand Rapids, Michigan, area. Her work ties into the lives of young people, and her passion is to empower and equip the next generation of servant leaders. Pastor Laurie and her husband, Mark, have three children—one in grad school, one in college, and one in high school. Pastor Laurie enjoys deep conversations, bike rides, exploring the shores of the Great Lakes, and watching well-played soccer.

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