You are ashamed because you went to jail. You are ashamed because you had an abortion. You are ashamed of how many men/women you slept with. You are ashamed because your marriage failed.
Some of the sicknesses that people carry are not hereditary. Some of it is due to the shame and secrets that they have been carrying for most of their lives. Before Adam and Eve sinned, they were both naked and NOT ashamed. After sin, they covered themselves with fig leaves. When God asked Adam where he was, Adam answered, ‘I heard your voice in the garden and I was afraid because I was naked and I hid myself’. Shame is one of the weapons the devil uses against you. He will influence you to sin only to make you feel ashamed about it later. He will beat you over the head about something Jesus was already beaten for. Shame makes you think that you are a failure and a mess-up. Now you don’t believe that God loves you. Now you don’t talk about God like you used to. Now you don’t feel worthy to preach the gospel. Now you don’t go to church like you used to. Either you are afraid someone will find out your secret so you go into hiding or you are embarrassed and ashamed because someone found out about your secret.
Shame is not always the result of sin. Paul was attacked by the devil because he was anointed. Paul wasn’t just anointed to preach, but he was anointed to cast out devils, heal the sick and to set people free from the oppressor – the devil. The devil hated him because the anointing on Paul’s life was able to destroy the yokes he placed on people’s lives. In Acts 28, while Paul was gathering sticks for a fire, a snake crawled out and bit his hand. When the people saw the snake hanging from Paul’s hand, they said to each other, ‘This man must be a murderer’. The bible tells us that Paul shook off the beast into the fire and was not harmed. The devil wanted to shame him. He wanted Paul to swell and fall dead in front of the people. The people watched for a long time and when they saw nothing happened, they changed their minds about Paul. These signs shall follow them that believe; in My name…they shall take up serpents (Mark 16:17).
In the same place where this incident took place, Paul was staying with the governor of the island for three days. Publius’ father was sick due to a fever and dysentery. Paul prayed, laid hands on and healed his father. When this happened, every person who had some type of disease came and were healed. When the people saw the snake bit Paul’s hand earlier, fear gripped them, but Paul didn’t allow fear to grip him. The audience that the devil tried to shame Paul in front of was the same audience that saw Paul put the devil to shame.
This is why when things aren’t going the way you think it should, don’t faint. This is why when you mess up, don’t faint. When you sin, confess it and repent immediately. Don’t let sin expose you. You expose sin and the devil. Confess your faults one to another and be healed. The devil wants you to become sick due to shame, guilt and embarrassment. He wants these things to kill your joy, peace and then ultimately kill you. I don’t care how bad it was, God has given you grace to overcome disgrace.
There was a woman in the bible that was bent over for 18 years due to an infirmity. She couldn’t straighten herself up. (Notice I said SHE couldn’t do it). Some of you have been bent over for years due to shame, but today God is removing the shame. God is removing the bad name and He is replacing it with a good name. He is lifting every head that is bowed down in shame. People may talk about you and your family now, but God is about to change the conversation of the gossips and the doubters. God is going to turn a bad thing into a good thing and people are going to start talking about the all good things God has done for you. The devil wants to steal your testimony because he knows that you can defeat him by the word of your testimony, but God is turning this thing around and it shall turn to you for a testimony.
Do not be afraid. You will not be ashamed neither will you be disgraced. The devil keeps reminding you of what God has forgiven and forgotten, but God is going to make you forget the shame and you will not remember it anymore. The devil that tried to shame you and your family will be brought to shame in Jesus name.
No more shame.