Don’t Be Ashamed – Where does shame fit in with your faithfulness to God?

Red square with purple lines under the words Don't be ashamed. Psalm 25. This is a blog post by Dawn Michelle Michals.

I’ve started reading the Daily Office over at The Mission of St. Clare every morning. Yesterday, the Psalm reading maybe me stop in my morning practice and write it down.

Specifically verse 3. Here it is from Psalm 25.

“Do not let those who wait for you be put to shame;
    let them be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous.”

Shame. It scares me. Does it you? I hate to be ashamed. Actually, I hate to be embarrassed. Is that the same thing?

In fact, I have social anxiety because of it. I never want to be called out, degraded, fall down, have snot on my face, have anything someone could shout I have out of place.

And, I would never do that to anyone else.

My friend sent me a TikTok a few days ago of a speech Paul Harvey gave in 1965. Here is a link to the transcript. There are numerous videos on YouTube. If you haven’t heard it yet, it’s mesmerizing, powerful and hits you in the gut.

At least it did for me.

In it, he says, “I would confide that what’s bad is good, and what’s good is ‘square.’ 

Shame.

In verse 3, the psalmist writes, “…let them be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous.”

How is it that today, what was considered “bad” has no shame? What once was considered bad is now free spirited, complete and whole? What once was considered bad is now publicized on all social media and TVs and shown to us repeatedly without an after thought of how it will affect how minds, bodies, and children?

It’s a shame.

You see what I did there?

Now let’s talk about this when it comes to worshipping God.

Are you ashamed?

Jesus says in Matthew 10:33, “but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.”

The devil wants us ashamed, beat down and scared. He comes to kill, steal and destroy. But, Jesus came for us to have life with abundance.

When it comes to following Christ, the devil wants nothing more than for you to be ashamed. He wants us embarrassed to serve God. Do you find yourself changing your conversation for others? Do you stop talking about God in certain situations because it could affect you negatively?

It is now more important than ever that we know God’s Word and stand.

We can’t let the devil take over. He doesn’t win. Read Revelation. Our God wins. Stay true to your faith, my friends. Stay close to God. His word says that if you draw closer to him, he will draw closer to you. (James 4:8)

I know it can be hard. I am living through this with you trying to decide what to say and how much to share about my Christian faith. But, I will not allow the devil to squash my dreams. I live on the Word of God and his promises.

I will wait for you, Lord. And, I will not be put to shame.

Psalm 25

Prayer for Guidance and for Deliverance

Of David.

To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul.
O my God, in you I trust;
    do not let me be put to shame;
    do not let my enemies exult over me.
Do not let those who wait for you be put to shame;
    let them be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous.

Make me to know your ways, O Lord;
    teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth, and teach me,
    for you are the God of my salvation;
    for you I wait all day long.

Be mindful of your mercy, O Lord, and of your steadfast love,
    for they have been from of old.
Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
    according to your steadfast love remember me,
    for your goodness’ sake, O Lord!

Good and upright is the Lord;
    therefore he instructs sinners in the way.
He leads the humble in what is right,
    and teaches the humble his way.
10 All the paths of the Lord are steadfast love and faithfulness,
    for those who keep his covenant and his decrees.

11 For your name’s sake, O Lord,
    pardon my guilt, for it is great.
12 Who are they that fear the Lord?
    He will teach them the way that they should choose.

13 They will abide in prosperity,
    and their children shall possess the land.
14 The friendship of the Lord is for those who fear him,
    and he makes his covenant known to them.
15 My eyes are ever toward the Lord,
    for he will pluck my feet out of the net.

16 Turn to me and be gracious to me,
    for I am lonely and afflicted.
17 Relieve the troubles of my heart,
    and bring me[a] out of my distress.
18 Consider my affliction and my trouble,
    and forgive all my sins.

19 Consider how many are my foes,
    and with what violent hatred they hate me.
20 O guard my life, and deliver me;
    do not let me be put to shame, for I take refuge in you.
21 May integrity and uprightness preserve me,
    for I wait for you.

22 Redeem Israel, O God,
    out of all its troubles.

Romans 12 – Marks of a True Christian

There’s a segment of Romans entitled “Marks of a True Christian.”

It stood out today to me in our Lectionary reading, so I wanted to share it with you.

One thing about scripture: It holds its own. I have nothing to share or say or preach about this passage. I only want to share the Word of God with you, and get out of the way while Him speaks to you through it.

Have a blessed Sunday, my sweet friends.

Romans 12:9-21 (ESV)

Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good.

Love one another with brotherly affection.

Outdo one another in showing honor.

Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord.

Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.

Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality.

Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them.

Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.

Live in harmony with one another.

Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly.

Never be wise in your own sight.

Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all.

If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.

Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.”

To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.”

Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

~~~~~
https://bible.com/bible/59/rom.12.9-21.ESV

This is the Day

A square with purple and red color swirls. A circle offset to the left reads, "This is the day that the Lord has made;
    let us rejoice and be glad in it." Psalm 118:24. A blog post by Dawn Michelle Michals. @dmmwrites on social media

Today is a day like no other. Why?

Because it’s today.

Okay, I know how cliche that sounds but I want to remind you, today, that this is the only day you have.

Matthew 6:34 says:

34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

God doesn’t want us to worry about tomorrow. He wants us to be present; in the moment. He wants us to think and be in today.

Today is very special. It is our time here on earth. And, by golly when you think about it, it sure is short. Our time here prepares us for our eternal life in Heaven. Our eternal destiny. It sounds kinda wackadoo. I know. Especially if you are new to this whole Christ-follower thing, or you don’t know Jesus at all yet. But, God came to earth for you. He came to earth so that he could know us and teach us. I kinda equate it to this…

So you know when a top CEO dons a disguise and goes to the lowest position of his or her company to see how it’s really run? Remember that show? I know it’s farfetched but stay with me here.

Jesus came to be our great rabboni–our great teacher. He left his position in Heaven as the Right Hand Man of God to come to earth to grow and love and teach us, specifically about the heart of His Dad, our Father. He not only came to teach us, but he also came to die for us as a sacrificial lamb taking on all our sins and erasing them from the books. Can you imagine? All of our sins were placed on him. Sins from people born two millennia later who he didn’t even meet in person while he was here in the flesh.

Yet, he did it anyway. He could have chosen a different way. He even asked our Father to “let this cup pass from me” if it wasn’t God’s will. But, he did it. He stayed true to course. Even though it was scary.

He took his today.

What does God want you to do today? Sit with Him and ask Him. He has lots of good things to say.

Not By Flesh and Blood

In Spiritual Formation (aka Adult Sunday School) this week, we discussed Matthew 16:13-20.

Peter Declares That Jesus Is the Messiah

13 When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?”

14 They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.”

15 “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”

16 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”

17 Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by my Father in heaven. 18 And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. 19 I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” 20 Then he ordered his disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Messiah.

To dig deeper into the passage, I reached for my handy study Bible given to me by a friend of mine. One verse stuck out to me in my reading.

17 Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by my Father in heaven. 

I want to share with you what it says in my study Bible: “People do not come to faith in Jesus Christ by scrutiny or searching, but by the the Father’s revelation of the Son to them. (see John 6:65).”

John 6:65 says, “He went on to say, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father has enabled them.”

God draws us. Not the other way around. Don’t you love when one scripture leads to another, then another, opening a door to great wisdom and understanding of God’s Word?

I found this cool link: https://www.gotquestions.org/drawn-salvation.html

It explains everything way better than I can. God draws us. Can you believe it? We don’t go to the Father without his drawing. We don’t go to the faith without him “dragging” us there. I don’t get it yet, but I will pray and God will reveal it to me.

I thought about waiting to post this until I did “get it.” But, will I ever really get it? Will all the revelations of Christ come to me in one fail swoop one day, and I will know and understand everything there is to know and understand?

No.

I don’t think so any way. There’s too much to learn. So, today, we start this journey together. This journey of God leading us, drawing us and dragging us to our salvation. What do you think about this link and the scriptures? Let’s start a conversation and spread the Good News to those who wish to read it and understand.

I Shall Not Want

A blog post about the 23rd Psalm by Dawn Michelle Michals titled I Shall Not Want @dmmwrites 
Psalm 23
A psalm of David.
1 The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
2     He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
3     he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths
    for his name’s sake.
4 Even though I walk
    through the darkest valley,[a]
I will fear no evil,
    for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
    they comfort me.

5 You prepare a table before me
    in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
    my cup overflows.
6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me
    all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord
    forever.

You may already know about my love for Matthew 6 in the Christian Bible. In fact, I’m writing a devotional on this very chapter. More news with that to follow. 🙂

But, one part of the chapter is really hard to believe for me. I’m just going to be honest.

But, that stops today. The word of God is truth. ALL of it. So I will believe every word of it moving forward from this moment.

Here’s what I mean…

When it comes to knowing that God will provide my every need, I have some doubts.

And, I shouldn’t.

But, my flesh is scared. However, my Spirit is strong. And, in Matthew 6, when Jesus says:

25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?

I must trust what He says.

Today, I will not worry anymore. I will no longer let the enemy scare me and bring me down.

I will forever walk in the love and trust of Jesus Christ.

I leave you with the words from the 23rd Psalm. What do you think about them? How does it make you feel that Jesus is our Good Shepherd supplying our every need?

Psalm 23

A psalm of David.

The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
    He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
    he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths
    for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk
    through the darkest valley,[a]
I will fear no evil,
    for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
    they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me
    in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
    my cup overflows.
Surely your goodness and love will follow me
    all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord
    forever.