Breaking Free of Shame (4 of 6)

Breaking Free of Shame (4 of 6)

Sun 16 Mar 2008 PM

A second key in breaking free is to identify our own type of covering, by checking out a range of common 'false identities'. Only when the mask is removed, can we become honest with ourselves, and how we were affected. What was my experience of shame? How did I feel? What message did it give about myself? How did I cover myself? As long as I stay covered, I am open to demonic spirits; but the truth sets us free, through Christ we can break all agreements, attachments, intimacy to shame.
Audio Transcript
Today I want you to be open for the spirit of God to change your life, and over the last few weeks we've been talking with you about shame and recognising shame, how shame enters, what it is, what it speaks to you. We're going to today, I want to just start the keys on how to get out of it. We're going to just summarise what we shared last week, and then begin to go and open up some keys for you. Keys are not just something you know about. Keys are something, unless you stick it in a door and turn it, it doesn't happen, and the dilemma in the Christian church on the whole is people continually think if I know it, that means I know it, but biblically the only way you know something is if it's operating in your life, when you've actually experienced what you know about. You understand the difference between - suppose we talk about flying a plane.

There may be this man over here, and he's read all the books on flying, he knows how to fly a plane. Then there's someone else who's gone through a training school, and has actually flown a plane. Now we wonder which one you would commit yourself to? [Laughter] Which one would you commit yourself to? Well you see in the western culture, we commit ourself to the one who's read the book, and we become book readers and not flyers, but if you really want to fly, you've actually got to get the handles of the thing and do it. So if you wanted to learn how to fly, you really want someone who's had experience with it, and you actually have to gain experience yourself. Most of what we did yesterday was giving people a chance to have experience with God, because once you've got that experience, it's never taken away.

Let's go back into the Bible, Isaiah 54, and we were there on that scripture, we started the year off with growth, growing, enlarging. I want to pick up Verse 4: Do not fear, you will not be ashamed, neither be disgraced, you will not be put to shame, for you will forget the shame of your youth. You'll not remember the reproach of your widowhood anymore. And so God's telling us not to be afraid, not to have a heart that's gripped with fear, and about five times in different ways, He talks about this issue of shame. He says: you'll not be put to shame, in fact you will forget the shame of your youth. When He's talking about the shame of your youth, He's talking about things when we look back into our life, we're incredibly embarrassed about, one, what we did, and two, what happened to us. Remember some things in your past you're very ashamed of, the shame of your youth, goofy stuff you wish you'd never done it, and it was incredibly embarrassing.

Of course there's shame associated with many experiences we have in our younger days, and He says this. What the Lord says, He said: you won't remember the shame of your youth. It will actually go out of your mind, you won't be aware of it, it won't come back to you. You'll actually be free of it. This is a promise to be free of shame. He makes a promise to us, to be totally free of shame, and then the fear of being exposed that goes with it. If you have a fear constantly gripping your life, that somehow you'll be exposed, uncovered, people will find out what you're really like, you have got a great deal of shame in your life. Shame and fear go hand in hand. With shame comes the fear I will be exposed, someone will find out, and if you're trying to control your world, trying to prevent yourself being discovered, then you have some major issues with shame.

We saw that shame is an identity thief. It steals away who we are. What it does is, it causes us to put a mask on, and hide who we are. Adam and Eve hid themselves; they covered themselves with fig leaves, they pretend, they put on a mask, so you never see the real person. The real person can never come out, and if the real you can never come forth into life, your identity, who you are, has been stolen from you. You are acting a part, but not authentic, and that's going to affect every relationship, so that brings us to the second thing we saw with shame. Shame is an intimacy thief, because if you've got a mask on, so no one can see you, and you're afraid of exposure, you can't get near anyone either. You can't actually get near anyone. You can be around a table with them, you can talk with them, you can share with them, you can go on holiday with them - but they never know you. They never can know you, and you can never be known while you've got that mask on, and while you can't be genuine.

Sermon Notes
Keywords: mask, false identity, covering, agreements, attachments, reactions, demonic spirits, grief, accusing spirits, condemnation