DESPISING THE SHAME OF REPROACH
As a young girl growing up, I never knew my father. He was there and was a good provider, but we never had a conversation that I can recall, much less a relationship. It was years later before I realized the void this had created in my thinking. When I became a Christian, this experience, or should I say “lack of experience”, of having a relationship with my father left me with a problem in trying to relate to God as my heavenly Father. Every once in a while I would get real depressed over this issue until one day I was attending a women’s meeting where the speaker was sharing from the scripture in Hebrews 12:2. It says we are to “fix our eyes upon Jesus, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame”. She went on to say that Jesus had shown us an example of how to handle “shame” or “reproach.” Jesus “despised the shame.” He thought against it. Jesus kept His eyes on the joy that was set before Him and thought against the shame and reproach. She was encouraging each of us that day to lay aside any shame from our past and look to the joy of our future.
I became aware that day that I had been holding on to the shame of “not having a relationship with my father.” As I did that, I was ignoring all the wonderful things Jesus had purchased for me through His death and resurrection. By holding on to the shame of the past, I couldn’t look to the joy of the future that God had for me. When I realized at that moment how that must have made my heavenly Father feel, I apologized to Him right then and there. I promised Him I wouldn’t cry over the past anymore and I gratefully received Him as my father. From that point on I had a relationship with my father.
Wherever life has let you down, let Jesus make it up to you.