Jesus gives us the perfect example of how to help others overcome shame. The Pharisees brought a woman who had been accused of adultery to Jesus and asked him what should happen to her. According to the law, they said, she should be stoned. Jesus does the remarkable. He does not say the law is bad, unfair, or unjust. He focuses instead on the ones who have placed themselves above the law. Jesus asked for those who were without sin to cast the first stone. Scripture says that Jesus was writing in the sand with His finger. Some believe Jesus was writing out the sins of the accusers in the sand.
One by one, each of her accusers laid down his stone and walked away. No one was left to condemn her. Jesus then told her that He did not condemn her either. Jesus demonstrated how to overcome shame with grace, mercy, and love. Jesus pointed out to everyone their own sins and brokenness. What is remarkable is how Jesus was able to place shame where shame belonged.
Story after story tells us about Jesus taking what was unclean and making it clean. Jesus was also a master at holding up a mirror to those who shamed others. Shame-based people tend to use shame to control and manipulate others. We are all going to cross paths with people who are shame-based at some point in our recoveries. At different times in our lives, we are each the woman who was brought before Christ. Shame-based people will attempt to pass their shame on to us. Christ did not allow this type of behavior in the past, and He will not allow it now. No one will be left to condemn us, and we will remain free from the shame they attempt to place on us.
Written by Jackell.