Shame is defined by Merriam-Webster as a painful emotion caused by consciousness of guilt, shortcoming, or impropriety. Guilt results from knowing that we have done something wrong, but shame tells us we are something wrong. When shamed we think we are not worthy and have trouble accepting forgiveness. Andrew Comiskey describes shame like this: “Shame is the raincoat of the soul, repelling the living water that would otherwise establish us as the beloved of God. It prevents us from receiving grace and truth where we need them most.”
Shame was what the woman caught in adultery was experiencing in John chapter eight. She had disobeyed the law of Moses but now was exhibited in front of the crowds at the temple. Not only was her sin publicly exposed but most likely, she would have been almost naked. This must have been the ultimate shaming experience. But Jesus intervenes, her accusers leave and she is forgiven to start a new life.
As we consider our story today, how can we have hope when we deal with shame? God’s Word shows us what to do in a positive way when we are experiencing shame. It gives us hope! Everyone, including believers in Jesus, have made mistakes that we regret. The enemy likes to make us believe that God will not forgive us and does not care. Those are lies by the enemy. There is no one who loves you more than Jesus. Remember Jesus loved you so much He took ALL of your sins upon Himself on the cross. That is love in action!
What can I do in the midst of my shame?
1 John 1:9But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. Confess whatever is making you feel shame, guilt, and regret. Let the Lord wash you!
Micah 7:19Once again you will have compassion on us. You will trample our sins under your feet and throw them into the depths of the ocean! Let sin go because you have been forgiven. When we are forgiven, we are freed from the sins that have entangled us.
Eph. 5:25Jesus gave up his life for the church 26 to make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word. When we are forgiven that means that God does not hold our sin against us.
God wants to help you. Take advantage of His words, bearing in mind, that He is with you, every step of the way.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I give thanks that You created me for a life of loving relationship with You and others. Instead I’ve been plagued with feelings of shame for a long time, often feeling unworthy, insecure and inferior. Forgive me for running to isolation, addiction, and destructive actions when I felt ashamed rather than calling on You for help.
Thank you that Jesus died on the cross for me, so I could be forgiven, cleansed, healed and made whole. I acknowledge that only You can restore me to new life, and I choose to put my trust in You to do that.
Help me to focus my thoughts on truth and not react to my feelings. When I feel like running or isolating, please strengthen me to remain and seek out healthy people in recovery with whom I can be honest about my feelings. I am forever grateful that You care for me. Amen. 
To hear more about the woman caught in adultery, listen here: https://podpoint.com/light-of-christ-church-podcast/hope-in-my-sin
 https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/shame Accessed on July 20, 2020
 Grace for Shame, Robert Walter, https://ongodstrail.kartra.com/portal/y0BzDEgnCbrK/post/31, accessed July 22, 2020.
[3-5] Tyndale House Publishers. (2015). Holy Bible: New Living Translation . Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers.
 http://pihprayer.blogspot.com/2018/09/prayer-for-overcoming-shame.html Accesssed: July 20, 2020