“Shame corrodes the very part of us that believes we are capable of change.”
— Brené Brown
There are all sorts of reasons why we find it almost impossible to change.
We try and try and try again, before, for a time, we entertain giving up. At times we do give up, even for a time. And then we find we need to continue. Sometimes we cannot give up, but we cannot also change. We are stuck in the in-between; a horrible graceless land of the soul that feels completely disempowered of control over itself.
Shame is not the only reason that we may find it impossible to change.
But shame—for a past we’d rather deny and forget—sometimes consumes us, either consciously or unconsciously. Being empowered to real change can, therefore, be about being open to the God of forgiveness—in Jesus Christ—to overcome such shame in order to be empowered, through the Spirit of God, to change in any way we want or need to.
God knows we’re all sinners and accepts us as we are. Only when we’ve accepted God in this way can we redeem the power to change, which is nested in accepting truth.
Honouring Both God and Ourselves in Change
If there is something deep in our spirits that we wish to have changed, something God is continually reminding us about, we will not be able to deny it for long.
God insists on continuing to attempt breaking through to us, even though we may prefer to block our ears at the deafening trumpet sound. On the other hand, God is not pushy. He won’t insist on us changing, but through the circumstances of life he continues to patiently knock at the door of our hearts.
So, when we continue to search for ways of changing, particularly by addressing our causes for shame, we honour God and ourselves. We make about the best investment we can, besides the investment of accepting salvation.
Honouring God is about being available to the truth.
Shame can be transformed—from devastating to victorious—into a potent testimony of God’s power to institute new life.
Real change is about the courage to accept the irrefutable truth, and the reward is empowerment. The Spirit’s power is known by acceptance and truth. The Spirit’s power is something inexplicable, but something just as much incredible in its capacity to facilitate real change by the agency of the miraculous.
When we have the Holy Spirit’s power, because we have accepted Jesus into our lives, because we have been honest with God, we have power for change.
Empowerment for real change is about being honest with ourselves regarding our past, brave in the present moment, and committed to our future. When we accept God’s truth in our lives, we are given power to change.
© 2013 S. J. Wickham.