I wore shame like my favorite jacket for over eight years. I carried it around with me like it was my oxygen. I didn’t know how to live without it. It had become an every day accessory. Even after finding healing, even after the wounds of my past had been healed, even after I lost the bondage of depression that had been weighing me down... there was still shame. Shame was my story, and I was believing the lie that to get to the good part in my story I had to find a way to dress my shame up, to make it look presentable because there was no getting rid of it. After all, you can’t get rid of the main character in the middle of the story... or can you?
In a previous blog of mine, titled: When Depression Comes Knocking, I talked about how the Lord healed me of Chronic Suicidal Depression that I had been battling with for almost ten years. Being healed of my depression and anxiety was like losing 100 pounds. I had never felt more free in my life, but eventually I came to a roadblock. I couldn’t figure out how to continue my story in a way that would include all of me; past, present, and future.
Then one night I heard a teaching that changed everything. In this message that was being preached, the woman was telling us that our trauma doesn't define us. Our past doesn't define us. That hit me like a sack of bricks. I had spent so much time trying to figure out how to juggle my new life and my old life at the same time, so to hear this revelation was like cold water to the face. It shocked me. God was and is more powerful than my story. He is the ultimate author. He could erase my shame and still give me a beautiful ending. I didn't have to keep juggling my past. I could let it go completely. I could be a new me, and the new me is a daughter of a King.
Shame is not your story. You are more than what happened to you. You are more than the mistakes you made. God is longing to erase the hurt and the pain and create a whole new story for you. One that is filled with beauty, love, and His undying, never ending, affection for you, His sons and daughters. Your past is not the most important part of your story. It's not the juicy hook that draws people to continue reading. It's not the messy part that makes people cringe. It's none of these things because when you give your story over to God, our ultimate author, He takes the messy stuff. He takes your shame, he takes your pain, and turns it into something truly beautiful; something that is so awe-inspiring that people can't look away. They are drawn to the parts of Him that overflow off the pages of your story.
The best is yet to come. No matter where you are in your story, whether it's the beginning or the middle, or even the end, the best is yet to come. The most important, the most beautiful parts of your story are still being crafted by our Ultimate Author. He has a plan for all of us, and that plan doesn't include shame as the headline, because shame is not your story.