Christian Living


Overcoming Addictions 05/16/17

I Feel So Ashamed


When I was a child, I was often embarrassed by my mother’s behavior. She was addicted to narcotics, so it was not unusual to be sitting next to her and watch her head bob as she nodded out for a split second (at the dinner table, driving the car, at weddings, etc.). Her half-mast eyes and slurred s-l-o-w speech were other indicators that she’d taken too many pills. As a teenager, I didn’t invite new friends to my house; I’d meet them other places. I was ashamed. And I’m not alone. Many of us who ended up with our own addiction problems grew up with the stronghold of addiction in our home and gene pool. And shame? It becomes our tolerable companion.

Feeling ashamed is the birthplace of denial and deception. On the outside, we put up a front that everything is OK, no matter what. We begin to live a lie. The lie might be about our own behavior or someone we love. Why do we do that? Because we don’t want anyone to know! Duh! We don’t want to be judged, left out, or found out by other people.

When we are deep into an addiction or other destructive behavior, we make grand efforts to keep it secret. In many cases, if our employer knew what we were doing, we’d be fired. If our spouse knew what we were doing, we’d be divorced. We don’t want the consequences of our behaviors! So we live a lie. In fact, we often live like nobody knows about our secret life, because many of us are sooooo good at appearing like everything is OK. Even if we didn't grow up with it, the life of an addicted person dons the cloak of shame, lies, and distorted reality.

Well, guess what? We might fool our spouse, employer, parents, kids, and friends, but we are not fooling our Creator. God sees us and longs for us to come to Him confessing our behavior, our sin. That uncomfortable feeling we experience when we are worried that we’re going to get caught is our God-given conscious telling us to come clean, to choose to live a life without being ashamed. Our loving Savior died on the cross to pay for ALL of our sins. He has already been tortured for the sin that we’re living in as we continue to partake of our secret sin. He has His hand stretched out to us, offering us a life free of deception. He sits ready to listen to us tell Him what we’ve been doing that we know could destroy our life. He’s not going to fire us or divorce us! He’s going to forgive us and help us learn to live a new life.

What would you like Him to cleanse you from? Are you ready to let Him remove your shackles of shame and deception? 

Feel free to post it here or call our 24-hour prayer center at 1-800-700-7000. Begin your journey away from shame.

Copyright © 2010 Beth Livingston. Used by permission.

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