Shedding Shame

WINNING WITH THE WORD
by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Winning with the Word” is a weekly blog that will help you to be a winner in life by applying God’s principles for living the abundant life as found in the Bible, God’s manual for life.

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Shame is to the heart as chains are to the body. It imprisons us and causes us great emotional pain.

Shame keeps us bound to the past and prevents us from moving forward into the future with joy and expectation.

What exactly is shame? In his wonderful 1828 dictionary, Noah Webster defines shame as “a painful sensation excited by a consciousness of guilt, or of having done something which injures reputation; or by that which nature or modesty prompts us to conceal. Shame is particularly excited by the disclosure of actions which, in the view of men, are mean and degrading.”

Most, if not all, of us have experienced shame in one way or another.

I come from a poor family of eight children. Were it not for the generosity of the nuns at the Catholic school I attended, we would have often gone to bed hungry. Frequently, the nuns would graciously give me a big bag of their leftover egg salad sandwiches to take home to my family. As I rode the school bus with that large shopping bag filled with the nuns’ pungent sandwiches on my lap, I felt shame. Shame because the other kids on the bus not only knew what I was carrying, but also why.  Shame because I believed the lie that poor people were inferior. 

Shame is the lie that says you’re not good enough. While guilt says I MADE a mistake, shame says I AM a mistake.  

Where does shame come from? Shame has two sources:

1-Shame can come from our own sin.
2-Shame can come from the sins of others against us.

Let’s look at each source.

First, shame can come from our own sin. When we disobey God’s Word and do something He has commanded us not to do, we feel shame because we know we have done wrong. We also feel shame because we have been found out by God–Who knows everything anyway–and shame because we may have exposed ourselves to the displeasure or scrutiny of others and, as a result, have gone down a notch in their estimation of us.

Shame from our own sin makes us want to hide. And so we do. We hide in our jobs, in our hobbies, in social media, in our relationships, in our busy lives. Anything to avoid facing the pain of our shame.

Second, shame can come from the sins of others against us. For example, our parents may have spoken negative words to us as children—words that wounded our hearts.  Have you ever heard these words as a child?

__”You’ll never amount to anything.” 

__”You’re so clumsy!”

__”You’re stupid.”

__”You’re fat.”

__”Our family is poor.”

__”No one will ever love you.”

__”I wish I never had you!”

__”You were an accident.”

__Why can’t you be like your brother? Your sister?

__”You’re ugly.”

__’You’re (You fill in the blank).”

Words such as these linger with us all of our lives, imprisoning us in shame, unless we deal with them.

One of the worst things about shame is that, if we don’t deal with it, we tend to pass it on to others, especially to the next generation. We do this by blaming them for our problems or by shaming them. For example, a mother who hates her own overweight body will often criticize her daughter’s food choices, thereby passing on to her daughter a sense of shame about her body. A husband who was belittled by his boss during the day will come home and belittle his son in order to soothe the shame inflicted on him by his boss. Unless stopped, shame passes from one generation to the next.

Shame is a painful emotion that comes from our belief that we have fallen short of the expected mark. When we sin, we have, indeed, fallen short of God’s expected mark. Romans 3: 23 says that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”

Whether our shame came from our own sin or from the sins of others, we don’t have to continue to live with it. God has provided a way out of our shame. His Name is Jesus Christ.

When we repent of our sin and receive God’s forgiveness, He cleanses us from all shame, regardless of where it originated.

Has your life been filled with shame?  If so, read this promise from the Lord to you: “Instead of your shame you will receive a double portion, and instead of disgrace you will rejoice in your inheritance” (Isaiah 61: 7).

Would you like to shed your shame and receive a double portion of honor instead? Then accept Jesus Christ, the only One Who can release you from your shame. Pray this simple prayer with me now:

“Lord Jesus, my life has been filled with shame. I don’t want to live with this pain of shame any longer. I receive You now as my Savior and Lord, as the only One Who can free me from shame. I give my shame to You and in exchange I receive a double portion of honor. Thank You, Lord, for freeing me of shame and for saving me. Amen.”

If you prayed this prayer, you are now a born-again child of God. Please write to me at info@maryanndiorio.com. I would like to send you a free booklet that will help you get started in your relationship with Christ.

In closing, my prayer for you today is this: “May God take the former shame of your life and turn it into the strength of your life.”

Before you leave, please check out my resources for overcoming shame: my non-fiction book titled You Were Made for Greatness! and my fiction series titled The Italian Chronicles whose heroine deals with shame. You will find links to both below.

Listen to the podcast here:

Follow the page-turning saga of Maria Landro as she struggles with shame.

The Italian Chronicles by MaryAnn Diorio


THE ITALIAN CHRONICLES: THE COMPLETE TRILOGY

Follow the page-turning saga of Maria Landro as she struggles with shame.

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Positive Changes Coming up in “Winning with the Word” Blog and Podcast

WINNING WITH THE WORD
by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Winning with the Word” is a weekly blog that will help you to be a winner in life by applying God’s principles for living the abundant life as found in the Bible, God’s manual for life.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog, click here. 

If this blog has blessed you, please encourage your family and friends to subscribe as well. Thank you!

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Dear Friends,

Thank you so very much for your input regarding the “Winning with the Word” blog and podcast. Your suggestions were wonderful, and I will implement them in future posts.

Here are a few of the great topic ideas you shared and would like to see addressed in this blog:

__How to get out of a bad situation.
__How to encourage people to do Bible studies.
__Gemstones, Ganesh, and the Word of God

Another positive change is that blog posts will now be shorter. I understand that you are busy and may not have time to read long posts, so posts will now be between between 500 and 600 words max. This will make my accompanying podcasts a bit shorter as well. But my hope is that these shorter posts will make it easier for you to find time in your busy schedules to read and/or listen.

Please continue to send me your suggestions. You can post them in the comment box below each post, or you can write to me directly at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com.

I wish you all a beautiful Christmas season filled with the love, joy, and peace that only a relationship with Jesus Christ can bring. If you don’t yet know Him as Your Savior, please click here.

Merry Christmas!

MaryAnn

ARE YOU PLAYING THE BLAME GAME?

WINNING WITH THE WORD
by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Winning with the Word” is a weekly blog that will help you to be a winner in life by applying God’s principles for living the abundant life as found in the Bible, God’s manual for life.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog, click here.  

If this blog has blessed you, please encourage your family and friends to subscribe as well. Thank you!

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Do you prefer listening instead of reading? Then click below to listen to today’s blog post:

 

 

”It’s all your fault!” How often have I heard my grandchildren utter those words to one another! Too many times to count. Yet, while such an accusation may be expected among children, I hear it among too many adults as well. 

So, what is the Blame Game?

The blame game is the act of refusing to take responsibility for one’s own actions and the attempt to place responsibility for one’s actions on someone else.

Let’s take a look at some players of the blame game. You will hear them say things like this:

“The devil made me do it.”

“It’s all my mother’s fault.”

“If only my father had not been an alcoholic, I wouldn’t be one either.”

“If I had not grown up in a dysfunctional family, my life wouldn’t be such a mess.”

“If only I didn’t like potato chips so much, I wouldn’t be overweight.”

All of these statements reveal a failure on the part of those who say such things to take responsibility for their lives.

You see, the truth is this: We alone are responsible for our choices and our actions. While we are not responsible for the choices and actions of those who have harmed us in any way, we ARE responsible for how we respond to the choices and actions of those who have harmed us.

Like many of you, I grew up in what would be described as a dysfunctional home. In fact, I think every home is dysfunctional in some way. As I approached my twenties, I stood in front of the mirror one day and said, “Girl, your past can either break you or make you. Which is it going to be?” Right then and there, I decided and declared aloud that my past was going to make me.

From BLAMER to TAMER

Because God has given you a free will, you can move from blaming others for your choices and actions to taming your choices and actions. How?  By taking responsibility for your choices and actions. By placing them under your control and, in turn, under the control of the Holy Spirit.

It is not what happens to us that matters.
What matters is how we respond to what happens to us.

And God has given you the power to make that right choice.

So use your power to choose. And use it wisely. Don’t let the past dictate your future. Don’t blame others for where you are today. Choose to take responsibility for your choices and your actions.

And remember this: It is not what happens to you that matters; what matters is how you respond to what happens to you. In other words, whether you have had an ideal childhood or you have come from the worst home situation possible doesn’t matter. What matters is that you have the God-given power to make wise choices to create a fulfilling future. Use that power from now on!

Listen to the podcast here:  

 

Winning with the Word Podcast Series

Write Your Heart Out! – Podcasts for Writers

NOTE: If you are struggling to take responsibility for your life, I can help you! As a highly experienced Certified Life Coach, I will help you set priorities in line with your God-given purpose. For more information or to set up a phone appointment, please send me an email at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com. You’ll be taking the first step toward getting out of your mess of stress!

Now, it’s YOUR turn:  What are some steps you’ve taken to eliminate blame from your life? Please leave your response in the Comment Box below. Thank you!

TWEETABLE: “Are You Playing the Blame Game?” by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio (Click to Tweet)

Please tell your family and friends about this blog and please pass this post on to them. Thank you!
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To help you get free from playing the blame game, I wrote YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS!. This book will reveal to you your true power and authority in Christ, including your power and authority to stop playing the Blame Game. Get your copy now!

greatness-ebook-cover-072516Learn about your power and authority in the Kingdom of God! Discover who you truly are in Jesus Christ!

YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS! by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio
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If you found this post helpful, please forward it to a friend. Thank you! Check our archives in the right sidebar for older posts on a variety of topics. You may also search for a particular topic in the search box at the top right. Some of our most popular posts are:

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Do You Need a Second Chance? by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

WINNING WITH THE WORD
by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Winning with the Word” is a weekly blog that will help you to be a winner in life by applying God’s principles for living the abundant life as found in the Bible, God’s manual for life.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog, click here.  

If this blog has blessed you, please encourage your family and friends to subscribe as well. Thank you!

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PODCAST: “Do You Need a Second Chance?” by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

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On my morning walk this morning, I saw a tree that caught my eye. What struck me about this tree is that the lower part of its trunk was crooked while the upper part was straight.

Instantly, the Lord spoke to my heart: “If you follow My ways, no matter how crooked your past, I will make your future straight. I will give you a second chance.”

Overwhelmed by the Lord’s mercy, I thought of my own life. Before I met Jesus, I was following a crooked path, a path that would eventually lead to death and destruction. But when I met our precious Lord, He redirected my life and put me on a straight path. He gave me a second chance.      

Perhaps you, too, need a second chance today. Perhaps you’ve    been following a crooked path–whether through ignorance, rebellion, or a combination of both. Whatever the case, God is  ready to take you by the hand and put you on the straight path.

What is the straight path?

The straight path is the path that leads to life. It is the path of righteousness. It is the narrow path that alone brings joy and peace.

Some people are blessed with starting out on the straight path and remaining on it. Because of the Word of God engrafted early on in their young hearts, such people never enter the crooked path but remain faithfully on the straight path. They never experience crookedness but grow straight–like the straight young sapling I also encountered on my morning walk. This tree is growing in the right direction, following the path intended by its Maker from the beginning.

Most of us started out on a crooked path. Life has bent us and twisted us and distorted us. But God can give us a new direction. He can redirect our path toward Truth and Light and Life. We have only to repent and surrender to Him. 

The tree on my morning walk had started out crooked but now it was growing straight. Straight upward toward the One Who’d created it in the first place. My “second-chance tree” was finally pointed in the right direction–not toward the world around it but toward the heavens above it. 

What about you? Do you need a second chance today? Do you need God to straighten you out? Do you need to leave behind the twisted pain of your life and embrace the beauty of being straight?

If so, God is ready to meet you. And in His hand, He is holding your second chance. Won’t you accept it now? Just pray this simple prayer with me:

Lord God, I am in desperate need of a second chance. I have messed up my life. I am bent and crooked and broken. Please straighten me out. Please give me a second chance. I repent of my former ways. In the Name of Jesus, I repent of having followed the crooked path. I receive You as my Savior and Lord. I now choose to turn with You onto the straight path. I choose to follow You on the straight and narrow path for the rest of my days. Help me, Lord. In the Name of Jesus. Amen.

If you prayed this prayer, you are now a born-again child of God. Please write to me at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com and I will send you a free booklet to help you start walking on the straight path.

Until next time, remember that God loves you just as you are, and just where you are, and that He will help you to keep on winning with the Word!

 

Do you prefer listening instead of reading? Then click below on the PODCAST LINK to today’s blog post:

PODCAST: “Do You Need a Second Chance?” by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

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Photos by MaryAnn Diorio. Copyright 2019. All  Rights Reserved.

Now, it’s YOUR turn: What about you? Are you on the crooked path or the straight path? If on the crooked, are you willing to change paths? I hope so! Please share your comments in the Comments Box below. Thank you!

TWEETABLE:  “Do You Need a Second Chance?”by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio @DrMaryAnnDiorio (Click to Tweet)

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If you found this post helpful, please forward it to a friend. Thank you! You may also be interested in reading the following popular posts:

“How to Handle Offense”

Is the Apocalypse Near?” 

“Convergence: Clear Sign of the End Times”

“The Rise of Wicca, Witches, and Warlocks” 

Please check our archives in the right sidebar for older posts on a variety of topics. You may also search for a particular topic in the search box at the top right. 

For additional encouragement, check out my podcasts at the following links:

A Moment with MaryAnn – Podcasts on Living the Good Life

Winning with the Word Podcast Series

Write Your Heart Out! – Podcasts for Writers

Please tell your family and friends about this blog and my other resources, and please pass this post on to them. Thank you!

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Copyright 20111-2020 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at info@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

Amazon.com Required Disclosure: MaryAnn Diorio is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.Disclaimer: This site uses cookies. Your continued use of this site constitutes your consent to our use of cookies. 

How To Handle Pressure

WINNING WITH THE WORD

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio


“Winning with the Word” is a weekly blog that will help you to be a winner in life by applying God’s principles for living the abundant life as found in the Bible, God’s manual for life.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog, click here.  

If this blog has blessed you, please encourage your family and friends to subscribe as well. Thank you!

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Do you prefer listening instead of reading? Then click below on the PODCAST LINK to today’s blog post:

PODCAST: “How to Handle Pressure” by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio
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One Brave Roman soldier in field. Photo.Have you noticed that pressure is increasing in your life? Are you finding it more and more difficult to handle the pressure as it bombards you from all sides? If so, take heart. There are certain things you can do to subdue the pressure, put it under your feet, and keep it there.

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines pressure as “the weight or force that is produced when something presses or pushes against something else.” While pressure is most often used to indicate a physical force, it can be used as well to indicate a spiritual force. In this discussion, we will use pressure to mean those demonic forces from hell that daily threaten to discourage, depress, and destroy the members of the Body of Christ.

We read in the Book of Ephesians that we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.”  Some translations use the word “wrestle” to indicate the type of spiritual battle in which we are engaged.

Wrestling involves hand-to-hand combat; indeed, body-to-body contact. In other words, it involves the whole person against the enemy.  The battle can often be vicious, and the fight sustained for long periods of time.

So, how do we handle this unrelenting pressure from the enemy? Our Lord has given us the weapons for not only engaging the enemy but also for conquering him. These weapons comprise the whole armor of God. Let’s take a look at each one.

1-The Belt of Truth. A Roman soldier’s belt held together the rest of his armorIn like manner, truth will hold together the rest of our spiritual armor as we fight the enemy. We must put on truth and walk in it in all of our dealings with God and man. Deception is rampant in our world today. Lying has become second-nature to many people. But the Follower of Christ must dealy truly and truthfully in every situation.

2-The Breastplate of Righteousness. The breastplate protected the Roman soldier from attacks against his vital organs, including his heart. Righteousness means right-standing with God. As born-again believers, we are protected from the enemy by the righteousness of Christ which we received when we accepted Him as Savior.

3-The Shoes of Peace. A Roman soldier wore special shoes that protected his feet from dangerous terrain, enabling him to step freely wherever he needed to step and to stand firm while engaging in battle. The shoes of the gospel of peace enable us to tread safely and to stand firm in the worst of situations.

4-The Shield of Faith.
The Roman soldier used his shield to ward off the fiery darts of the enemy. So do we use our Shield of Faith to ward off Satan’s fiery darts of doubt, unbelief, fear, strife, and every other fiery dart.

5-The Helmet of Salvation.
Just as a helmet protected the Roman soldier from injury to his head, so does the Helmet of Salvation protect us from injury to our thinking. Our salvation enables us to abide in Christ, and abiding in Christ will eventually transform our way of thinking into God’s way of thinking.

6-The Sword of the Spirit.  While all of the other pieces of our armor are defensive, the Sword of the Spirit is used in taking the offense. As the enemy attacks us with his lies, we retaliate by piercing him with the truth of God’s Word.

So, there you have it!  Six pieces of armor that will enable you not only to resist the pressure that comes against you but also to subdue it. Now, take up your armor and win!

______________________________________

Do you prefer listening instead of reading? Then click below on the PODCAST LINK to today’s blog post:

PODCAST: “How to Handle Pressure” by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio
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Now, it’s YOUR turn: How has putting on the whole armor of God helped you to deal with pressure? Please leave your response in the Comment Box below. Thank you!

TWEETABLE: “How to Handle Pressure” by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio (CLICK TO TWEET)

Please tell your family and friends about this blog series and please pass this post on to them. Thank you!

To help you better understand the power and authority you have as an Ambassador of Christ in the Earth, I wrote YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS!. Get your copy now!

greatness-ebook-cover-072516Learn about your power and authority in the Kingdom of God! Discover who you truly are in Jesus Christ!

YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS! by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

Kindle

iPad

Nook

Smashwords

AudioBook

 

If you found this post helpful, please forward it to a friend. Thank you! Check our archives in the right sidebar for older posts on a variety of topics. You may also search for a particular topic in the search box at the top right. Some of our most popular posts are:

Sex and Soul Ties

How to Recognize a Controlling Spirit

Embrace Your Race

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To be sure you don’t miss any of my future blog posts, please subscribe to Winning with the Word. CLICK HERE

For a list of my blog posts by date, please click here.

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JOIN MY TEAM and get my monthly newsletter delivered to your inbox. Each month you will receive an update about my writing ministry and my family plus an opportunity to win a free e-book. You will also receive a special family recipe straight from my kitchen to your. So, don’t delay! Sign up now by clicking here!

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Check out my You-Tube series, YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS!, based on my popular book by the same title.  

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NOW AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE:  In Black and White: A Novel

“Can endurance and faith sustain the love between a white woman and a black man as they are threatened by rejection, violence, and racial injustice? Can love alone reconcile their starkly different worlds, lighting the way to a bright future together? 

AMAZON
APPLE iPAD
BARNES & NOBLE
DRAFT2DIGITAL
KOBO
SMASHWORDS

NOTE: In full disclosure, the above are affiliate links. This means I earn a small commission on each sale made through these links. 

_______________________________________________

If you found this post helpful, please forward it to a friend. Thank you! You may also be interested in reading the following popular posts:

Living in a Violent World”

“How to Handle Offense”

Is the Apocalypse Near?” 

“Convergence: Clear Sign of the End Times”

“The Rise of Wicca, Witches, and Warlocks” 

Please check our archives in the right sidebar for older posts on a variety of topics. You may also search for a particular topic in the search box at the top right. 

For additional encouragement, check out my podcasts at the following links:

A Moment with MaryAnn – Podcasts on Living the Good Life

Winning with the Word Podcast Series

Write Your Heart Out! – Podcasts for Writers

Please tell your family and friends about this blog and my other resources, and please pass this post on to them. Thank you!

___________________________________________

Copyright 20111-2019 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at info@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

Amazon.com Required Disclosure: MaryAnn Diorio is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. Disclaimer: This site uses cookies. Your continued use of this site constitutes your consent to our use of cookies.