Thursday, February 20, 2014

Shame interrupted

The latest book I am reading on the Kindle, which I downloaded when it was going free, or cheap maybe, is Shame Interrupted, by Ed Welch. I’m so far finding it really helpful. Perhaps only some of us have times of significant shame in our lives, either brought to us by ourselves or by others, which can become crippling if not dealt with, as it’s a very debilitating state to be in (Welch aptly introduces shame as ‘The Quiet Killer’). This is a book offers a way to process it and find a way out.

So far it looks at how we experience shame (which, incidentally, was one of the first consequences of the fall in the garden), how Jesus himself was shamed (mocked, rejected, betrayed, abandoned, outcast and just about everything else that causes shame) and so bore our shame, what this might mean for our shame before others.

I do find it difficult to re-find passages on the Kindle, but here is a little portion after a treatment of some of the Beatitudes:
The first four beatitudes draw attention to our relationship with God. The message of the kingdom must begin with that relationship for it to sound like good news.

Here is the challenge. Your shame is about human relationships. What do other people think of you? Where can you fit in? Even now you could wonder, what does God have to do with this? The things God says are good, but they don’t seem connected to the deeper issues. For example, if you are a public failure, it is good that parents or friends love you, but that love doesn’t touch the rejection you experience. The love doesn’t take away the failure.

The acceptance of the King, however, coupled with the knowledge of how to live before him, will diminish the power of shame ...
If any of that sounds remotely relevant, I'd recommend the book.

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