Today I want to talk to you about the negative emotion of Shame. I heard a statistic the other day that 80% of the population operates with a shame-based nature. The first question is what is shame? How is it different from conviction, guilt and condemnation?
- Conviction is the Holy Spirit simply making you aware that you have committed a sin without any negative judgment about you as a person.
- Guilt is the emotion that results when you become aware that you have done something wrong via the conviction of the Holy Spirit.
- Condemnation is the sense of being a bad person the devil puts upon you after you become aware that you have sinned and experience guilt.
- Shame is a general feeling of being hopelessly defective or not good enough in your own eyes and/or in the eyes of others, including God.
The Shame, Fear, and Control Stronghold
Chester and Betsy Klystra, founders of Restoring the Foundations Ministry, introduced an interesting paradigm I think all of us should be aware of. They called it the Shame, Fear, Control Stronghold. Shame, fear, and control can each be a stronghold in and of themselves. However, the Klystras relay that when they are combined, they form a “super stronghold” that is very hard to break.
Chester and Betsy point out that the first time this pattern was introduced to mankind was in Genesis 4. In the Garden of Eden, after Adam and Eve sinned by eating from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, Adam basically told God, “I was naked, I was ashamed, I hid myself, so I covered myself.” We do the same thing today. We are aware and ashamed of our flaws and imperfections. We fear that people will find out who we really are, and we behave in ways to keep our flaws and imperfections covered so we can control how people see us or perceive us.
Breaking the Super Stronghold
The Bible says the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds (I Corinthians 13:10). Therefore, how can you break the stronghold of shame, fear and control? With the help of the Holy Spirit you must:
- Become aware of the shame that binds you.
- Become aware of controlling behaviors that are based in fear.
- Ask God to heal you of soul wounds that caused the shame in the first place.
- Receive a deep revelation of who you are in Christ based on the Word of God.
- Make a deliberate choice to face fear and stop controlling behaviors.
Beloved, you must make it your goal to live free of shame if you are ever to fulfil the purpose and plan God has for you. Be willing to do whatever it takes to get the truth into your heart and allow God to heal you of every soul wound. With the help of the Lord, the stronghold of shame, fear, and control, can be broken, and you will be able to live your life under the sole control of the Holy Spirit.
Do you recognize the shame, fear, and control paradigm? How do you think it has affected your life? Please leave a comment below.
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