Unmasking Shame (2 of 6)

Unmasking Shame (2 of 6)

Sun 2nd Mar 2008 AM

The message of shame is: I am damaged, I am different, and I am in danger. In Genesis we see man's response to this message, still acted out today: cover (wear a mask); hide (maintain distance); blame (transfer shame to others). Examining a detailed list of the fruits of shame will help us recognise the root. Owning the truth is the first step to freedom. What is worse - falling over, or refusing to believe God wants to get you up again? Whoever believes on Him, shall not be ashamed.
Audio Transcript
Okay, let's have a look in the Bible at Isaiah 54. We started last week a message called Unashamed. How many people have started to get stirred and challenged by that? Come on, that's right, come on into freedom, challenged into freedom, and right now the Holy Spirit is moving in the church as a result of us in fasting and prayer for a season, just lifting the lid off a whole number of things in people's lives. So if you're finding you've got all kinds of feelings and struggles, or things happening around in your life, don't be ashamed of it, other people are going through the same thing. It's part of growing; first you feel uncomfortable, then you begin to address the things you need to change.

We're reading in this Verse in Isaiah 54, and God is speaking in Verse 2: Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch out the curtain of your habitations. Don't hold back, don't spare. Lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes, for you shall expand. So God's speaking about expanding, growing, increasing, and increase happens externally. Increase firstly must happen internally, and so then He goes on, He says: Do not fear, for you will not be ashamed; neither will you be disgraced. You will not be put to shame; you'll forget the shame of your youth, and not remember the reproach of your widowhood anymore. So notice He uses these words: fear and shame. You won't be put to shame. God has got no shame to put on you. Not only that, He's got no fear that He wants to put on you. Fear and shame are limiters in our lives, and we looked last week at some aspects of how God made us.

We found we are made in the image of God, and what God made is good. We may be a bit damaged, but we're still good. We're made in the image of God. There is something good about every person. They're of a unique value, because we're made in the image of God, and we saw that when the original man and woman were made, they were clothed with the glory, with the goodness of God. There was a supernatural presence of God upon their lives, and so they were able to be naked, physically unclothed, but absolutely no shame, no awareness of shame. They never knew what shame was, and that was their condition. We saw that when people are unashamed, there's a number of things happen. We saw that when people are unashamed, they can become connected in relationship; when we're ashamed we disconnect in our relationships. We saw also that when people are unashamed, we can be confident, absolutely outspoken and confident, because we're unashamed, not ashamed of who we are, not ashamed of our thoughts, our ideas, what we have, who we are, where we stand.

Many Christians are ashamed, and shame will stop us being effective, got to push against this thing. We saw that when people are unashamed, then we can become creative in expressing how God has wired us and gifted us. We saw last week that God's desire and heart is to be unashamed, absolutely unashamed, so we're going to follow that through in recognising the fact that many people, many of us have and do struggle with shame. I want to over this today and the next couple of weeks begin to address - firstly we want to look at well, how would I recognise shame? If I'm going to beat something, I've got to recognise it. So you say well I'm doing okay, I'm not ashamed. Well we'll see, we'll see. If you don't know what it looks like, you'd never recognise if it's in your life, and the first phase of any changes in our life is to actually recognise where we're at, then how we got there, and detach from how we got there, then begin to build different things into our life so our future's different.

So to get free of shame, it's not a matter of simply come up the front, we pray and break something off you - if only. Now you can be prayed for, and lots of shifts can take place, but essentially, if you don't understand this whole issue and how it affects your life, you won't take the steps needed to move yourself out of it, and so I want to today just look at this whole area of shame. We want to look at the area of unmasking shame, get the lid off it, okay? So let's go have a look in Genesis. We'll have a look in Genesis, Chapter 3. Let's see where shame first came in, then we're going to try and have a look at what its message is. When shame is talking to you, it's saying something, so we're going to talk about what shame is saying, identify what it is, and how it impacts us. Then we're going to have a look then at just some examples of its fruit in your life, so I want you by the end of today, if shame is operating in your life, and affecting the way you run your life and relationships, I want you at least to be able to say: I'm recognising it. I've got a handle on it man! Man, oh! I thought I was doing alright but oh, there's something there I need to shift.

Sermon Notes
Keywords: damaged, different, danger, mask, rejection, punishment, cover, hide, blame, fruit of shame, victim