When I think of the word “disgrace”, I think of shame. I think of someone who was once “well loved” and “well thought of” who is now embarrassed and broken. On the other hand when I think of “grace”, I think of “blessing and freedom”. I think the opposite of disgrace. I think I understand both of these definitions all too well. I’ve experienced both.
Jeremiah speaks to Israel and Judah about returning to the Lord after disgracefully pursuing idol worship and ignoring God. I really connected with his invitation. Check this out…22 “Come back to me, you unfaithful children, and I will forgive you for being unfaithful.” “Yes, we will come to you, because you are the Lord our God. 23 It was foolish to worship idols on the hills and on the mountains. Surely the salvation of Israel comes from the Lord our God. 24 Since our youth, shameful gods have eaten up in sacrifice everything our ancestors worked for— their flocks and herds, their sons and daughters. 25 Let us lie down in our shame, and let our disgrace cover us like a blanket. We have sinned against the Lord our God, both we and our ancestors. From our youth until now, we have not obeyed the Lord our God.” (Jeremiah 3:22-25 NCV)
I have laid down in my shame and been covered with the blanket of disgrace. It is a low and shameful place. When I come to terms with the pain I’ve caused the Lord in my disobedience, I’m more prepared to understand grace. Jesus once explained to his disciples regarding a sinful woman who was washing His feet….
“ I tell you that her many sins are forgiven, so she showed great love. But the person who is forgiven only a little will love only a little.” (Luke 7:47 NCV)
I have tried to come to terms with the disgrace that my sin has brought to the Lord. I want to be deeply cleaned so that I can love much. I know I’ve been forgiven much. I don’t deserve salvation, but through grace I’m given life! There have been times in my life where I had to lie down in my shame and cover myself in disgrace in order to experience and taste Grace God gives. I’m so grateful that Grace wins that battle every time!Pressing On! Dwayne