2/4/14: Turn Shame to Story
All of us have done stuff of which we are ashamed. We were probably quite good at performing those shameful deeds too. In fact, I bet we spent time planning them, exhausted resources perfecting them, and expended energy performing them.
Thankfully (and hopefully), we put those days behind us once we had a real encounter with God. Still, unfortunately, after we commit ourselves to the Lord, there are times when we still sin, both unintentionally and willingly. We find ourselves in shame again; again in the position to ask for grace, mercy, and forgiveness. Then, in His awesome love, God forgives and restores, encourages us to go and sin no more, and we are revived and move along our merry way.
Let’s be encouraged today, though, not to forget from what and where God has brought us. The Psalmist says, “Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, and uphold me by Your generous Spirit. Then I will teach transgressors Your ways, and sinners shall be converted to You” Ps 51:12-13 (NKJ). Notice that once his joy is restored and he’s again uplifted by God’s generous Spirit, he doesn’t stop there. He speaks up to teach transgressors about God’s ways. What ways are those? God’s ways of dealing with sin.
You see, God taught this Psalmist something in what he went through. In the same way, God teaches us. When we sin against Him, He chastises us and lets us suffer some consequences. He wants us to learn and turn. Once we do, although our first instinct is to forget that shame and that pain, to the contrary, our responsibility is to turn that shame into the story that will teach others about the righteousness, goodness, mercy, and grace of God.
It’s fabulous to face a temptation and come out victorious on the other side having resisted it. However, even when we fail our tests, God can get the glory from the testimony of what we’ve learned. We’re not bragging about our sin, but by exposing skeletons, we will find they have no muscle to hurt us any longer. Like the Psalmist, once restored to joy by God’s generous Spirit, teach transgressors of what God can do and watch as they are converted to Him. Worship God, the Joy-Restorer.
©2010, 2014 Sharon Norris Elliott. Feel free to forward this devotion in its entirety, including this copyright line. Leave comments, ask questions, read past devotions, or subscribe to receive these devotions daily in your e-mail at www.sanewriter.wordpress.com. Also, periodically check in at www.LifeThatMatters.net to see what’s going on in the ministry.
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Boomerangs to Arrows: A Godly Guide for Launching Young Adult Children
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Power Suit: The Armor of God Fit for the Feminine Frame
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