As a substitute for the pastor Sunday we had the director of the camp our church is affiliated with.
The thrust of his message was the innocence of children. This is prior to guilt and shame setting in.
Guilt and shame are two distinct concepts, although they can overlap. But generally, guilt can be thought of as a child's response to doing what she knows or perceives is wrong. Shame, which is a more general sense of unhappiness or disappointment with oneself,
Shame works on us in many ways. We resort to all sorts of self-trickery to avoid its pain. We feel we have to maintain a façade, because if anyone knew the truth about who we really are, we would be rejected. We are ashamed of who we are. We try to hide behind what we are not.
"Sometimes we confuse guilt and shame. Guilt is what we appropriately feel when we have done something wrong. Shame is the feeling not of doing wrong but of “being” somehow essentially wrong down at the bottom of our deepest selves. We deserve to feel guilt. We don't deserve to feel shame.
The main passage sited is Matt 18: 2-4
2He called a little child and had him stand among them. 3And he said: "I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.
The word change (convert in the KJV ) is in the Greek strepho; strengthened from the base of trepo; to twist, i.e. turn quite around or reverse (literally or figuratively):
We have as a result of who we are erected a barrier, a force field in Star Trek terms. This was originally to protect that inner secret and very sensitive self. What it did was close us off from the world and in many cases from God.
I personally feel that we are born with a God shaped hole in our souls that only he can fill, we can try to fill it with all sorts of “things”, money, toys, and even other people. But they are not successful and we are never completely satisfied.
So how do you “turn around”, “change”? This was a question I asked 28 years ago.
The answer is
16"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son.
The one phrase I could not get passed was, ” whoever does not believe stands condemned” this is absolute, no argument! At this point I was looking for a “Loop Hole” I wanted to believe there were other ways to God but found this is the only way.
I remember when I accepted this fully and asked that yes I am a sinner and Lord come into my heart, this was with Nancy who lead me to this point.
I have had only one other experience that comes close and that was four years ago when I finally found out that being a cross dresser was not a sin. At both times I wept, the first time with joy the second with feeling the pain and suffering that we have gone through vanish. I also felt the need to help other T*’s find this peace and understanding.
The following is from Roxanne speaking form experience.
> One of the by products of clinical depression is a lack of inner peace. One of the benefits of receiving the Lord Jesus Christ as personal Saviour as found in John 14:27 and Philippians 4:7 is a peace not as the world gives and which passes all human understanding.