via EEWMagazine/EEW Magazine Editors:
Do you feel ashamed of your scars and embarrassed by your struggles? Have the things you’re going through left you red-faced, wanting to hide? Don’t you know every single believer has felt that way at one time or another?
Be aware that Satan loves to use shame as a tool of discouragement to make you forget God loves you unconditionally and has a purpose for you— despite the way things seem. If you need a little reminder, here are 7 scriptures (with some extra encouragement thrown in for good measure) to lift up your bowed-down head.
1. Don’t focus on now; focus on next. Hebrews 12:2 GW says, “We must focus on Jesus, the source and goal of our faith. He saw the joy ahead of him, so he endured death on the cross and ignored the disgrace it brought him. Then he received the highest position in heaven, the one next to the throne of God.”
The way Jesus died was viewed as disgraceful, embarrassing, and as something that undermined His deity. But you know what Jesus did? He endured the embarrassment of crucifixion by fixing His gaze upon what was coming next. Being crucified was not the end. Jesus knew He would rise again on the third day with all power in His hand, thereby securing redemption for us, and being elevated to the highest position. Now His name is above every other name (Philippians 2:9-11)! If Jesus had to focus on what was coming next for Him, so do you. Be assured that there will be glory after this.
2. See this as a testimony. In 2 Timothy 1:8 NIV, the Apostle Paul says, “So do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord or of me his prisoner. Rather, join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God.”
Paul, who suffered greatly for the name of Christ, reminded his protégé Timothy, and all other believers, not to be ashamed of his suffering—or their own. His testimony was intertwined with his trials, and so is yours. Going through hardship is a part of our Christian walk. It in no way undermines the gospel. In fact, suffering illuminates what we read on the pages of scripture. Through the ugly stuff, God’s power works, and His glory is revealed. So be courageous, encouraged, and reliant upon the Lord. While you faithfully go through, and when you come out, your life will testify of both the Lord’s sustaining and delivering power.
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