I think we all have broken places inside and that we all have areas of our life that cause us shame. I tend to hold guilt inside and let it built up until I blame myself for all the problems of the world. (Surely I’m not the only one who does this?) So, when I had the opportunity to review Unashamed: Healing Our Brokenness and Finding Freedom From Shame, I thought it was an excellent opportunity for me to consider some issues of shame in my own life and perhaps find a practical plan for healing.
The author, Heather Davis Nelson begins by telling us that everyone has shame. She reminds us that in Christ, we have exchanged our shame for beauty and that we can live shamelessly in our church communities if we consider each other in the correct way. Then, Nelson goes through three common types of shame: body shame, social shame, and performance shame. After this Nelson spends a chapter examining our responses to shame and then, she considers shame in marriage, parenting and in the church.
I found this book to be excellent, I gained much from it. I perhaps most loved her illustration of Tamar saying “Who will cover my shame?” when she is attacked by her brother, and then her reminder that Christ covers our shame. I felt this was such an amazing analogy.
Then, I also was struck by Nelson’s consideration of Adam and Eve. She reminds us that we often hide from our shame and blame others instead of owning up to our own guilt and being exposed before God. She also noted that God didn’t add to their shame but sacrificed for them and covered their shame. I really felt like that was so rich in meaning, especially as I considered how often, as a parent, I have been guilty of shaming my children for their wrongdoing.
Seeing as how shame is a common problem and it’s something that we all suffer from, I think this is a great read for anyone wanting to get rid of shame or to even just understand what shame is and how it affects each of us.
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