Shame basically works like this:
Shame is the fear of disconnection; it’s a fear of being vulnerable – so we run away, hide, build walls, and so on.
To have connection with God and others, you must be vulnerable – you must be willing to be seen.
How do we get past shame and begin to live vulnerably? Those who can move past shame and embrace being vulnerable are people who have a strong sense of love and belonging. In other words, they believe they are worthy of love and belonging – they see their worthiness.
Where do we get a deep sense of worthiness? You can’t really talk yourself into it; it ends up being fake. The true and lasting solution is looking to our Creator God who, in every way, was vulnerable for us. How can the one who created the heavens and the earth and everything in them be vulnerable?
Our God freely and without conditions gave a part of himself that had never been given before, knowing full well what would happen, (see Isaiah 53):
- When God arrived he was a baby risking disease, starvation, and murderous intentions.
- As he was on his mission can you hear the vulnerability in his words:
When he said he had no place to stay?
When the people he grew up with rejected him?
When the fans found it hard to follow him, and to his friends he needed to ask, “Are you going to leave me also?”
Then our God endured the ultimate shame of the the cross. Bearing our nakedness and the terror of disconnection unfiltered he knew that many he was dying for would scoff at him and reject him.
Your forever friend is the model of vulnerability and it’s his vulnerability that reveals our worthiness. His vulnerability has demonstrated his love for us and your belonging in his kingdom.
As much as you are able to understand God’s vulnerable love for you, you will move past shame and the destructive consequences of our fear of disconnection and begin to live the same life Christ did – a vulnerable life; a life that’s a fountain of joy, creativity, and love.