7 sneaky symptoms of shame

The more I study shame, the more convinced I become that basically everyone struggles with it.  And the more I study shame, the more apparent it becomes that while many of us have shame issues, very few of us are aware of that we have shame issues.

The nature of shame is that it longs to hide its nature.  Shame is ashamed of even itself. Very rarely does it make its presence known.  Instead, shame wraps itself up in other emotions, forcing you to play emotional Whac-A-Mole, keeping you engaged in a battle on one front while your opponent actually dwells somewhere else altogether.

Healing on His terms

You know what I hate?  Apathy.  It cuts you off from people and from God and it does it in such a sneaky way that you actually don’t even care about being cut off.  The promise of joy is no incentive to apathy; it doesn’t care.  The threat of discomfort is no deterrent to apathy; it is indifferent.

I want to be healed from apathy.  And I know God wants that for me too.  Which begs a question: if God cares so much about me being healed and free from my sin, why doesn’t He just wave a hand over my head and heal me from it?

Cows are cool but not God

While we’re on the subject of Jeroboam, let’s talk about this golden calf situation.

So the king took counsel and made two calves of gold. And he said to the people, “You have gone up to Jerusalem long enough. Behold your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt.” (1 Kings 12:28 ESV)

And let’s talk about how this isn’t a new story.

Rewind to when the people were actually brought out of Egypt, they were a little confused by why they were in a wilderness, and while Moses was up chatting with God, they got frustrated and as a result Aaron took the lead:

When God doesn’t work

God doesn’t work.

This was the heretical-on-a-number-of-levels thought I had the other day.

See, I did everything ‘right’. I spotted the signs of my God-hunger and received the information that maybe I was running on empty, trying to operate in my flesh and looking to those around me to meet needs that are designed to be met by God.

God-hunger

I like the Snickers commercials. The premise is that you’re not yourself when you’re hungry. You behave like a totally different person and you have no idea why. Then you get food and realize: oh! I was just hungry!  

When I was a kid I remember every time I would get upset about something my family would exchange glances and ask one another when was the last time I ate. I have learned to spot my signs of hunger. Irritability, mental confusion, shakiness are all symptoms that prompt me to check my stomach and consider whether or not I might need food.