Shame is a powerful liar. It uses external evidence to convince us that we ARE who we experience ourselves to be on a surface level: fearful, aggressive, bitter, lustful, greedy. Like an agate stone, our exterior life has much build up from the natural crud of life’s difficulty.

We fear a journey inward, thinking we will only see more of the same crud build up and confirm our shame to be true. So we distract ourselves with the usual pursuit of power, prestige, privilege, and pleasure. This is a downward spiral only adding to the crud.

But if we journey inward with God, we will find that the soul is naturally beautiful, and through the disciplines of cultivation and polishing our lives can “shine like stars” within a dark world. So don’t be afraid to take one step beyond, and through, your shame and discover that Jesus has disarmed it. Then you will see something beautiful.