I hate feeling ashamed, but it’s happened many times. It’s a gut-wrenching feeling of embarrassment. The actual definition is “embarrassed or guilty because of one’s actions, characteristics, or associations.” Whether it is a sin we have committed, a friend that we are not proud of, or just something about us we don’t like, we have all felt shame. And it’s not a feeling anyone wants.
Paul said “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek”Romans 1:16). Knowing the definition of “ashamed” makes this verse so much more powerful. Have I ever acted ashamed of the gospel of Christ? Have I been embarrassed about my love for God? I’m afraid that too often we are guilty of being “ashamed of the gospel of Christ.” Sadly, this is often the cause of bad behavior.
I want you to read these questions below and give them some thought:
- Do I pray before I eat, even in public?
- Do I go with friends to see immoral movies, because I don’t want to feel embarrassed and left out?
- Do I read my Bible in public or am I afraid of what others might think?
- Do I openly speak about God’s word and what it means to my life?
- If asked why or why not I believe certain things (ex: modesty, purity, Bible questions, etc) do I answer biblically, or would I be embarrassed to do so?
These are a few real-life scenarios I have been put in that tested my dedication and love for Christ. Unfortunately, I can’t say I have done the right thing in every situation, at times I let embarrassment get in my way. The guilt is almost unbearable when I think about all Jesus went through to save us. How could we ever be ashamed of doing what is right? Standing up and living for God should be the least-embarrassing thing we can do. We might have some awkward situations, but the more we do the right thing, the easier it will be. We should feel good, excited and PROUD to speak the gospel of Christ.
Paul wrote Romans during a time of great persecution for Christians. He himself went through beatings, imprisonment, hunger, being stoned and much more ALL because he was NOT ashamed of the gospel and he stood up for it. When I think about all he went through for the sake of Christ, it makes my embarrassment over “what will people think of me if…” seem so silly. The world is so unashamed of their sin that we need to be all the more unashamed and proud of shining God’s light. We can all stand up for God in one way or another. Let’s make it our goal to never live with guilt because we weren’t proud of the gospel of Christ.