I have a secret. And in the spirit of self-disclosure I have decided it is time for me to come forward and share. It’s one I have keep to myself for years. I have been too embarrassed to tell anyone about it. I think I should know better. It’s bad for my health. It’s a guilty indulgence. I feel some shame over the fact that I sneak my indulgence. I get it when no one is looking. I cover up that I have had it and feel guilty as soon as it is finished. I make excuses as to why I want it and pretend like it’s for someone else to avoid judgment. So, what exactly is this secret that causes guilt, shame and embarrassment yet keeps me coming back for more?
I love hostess cup cakes. Yep – there I said it. Hostess cupcakes.
Little chocolate cakes infused with artificial white lard filling and carefully placed chocolate lard icing complete with faux white swirls of decadent goodness.
When I eat them I am transported in time to when I was a kid. For a moment I am carefree and aware only of the taste of chocolate and I am intoxicated by the frosting.
Now I know that many of you are thinking, “that is a lame secret”!!
But before you judge let me say this. We all have things in our life that we are ashamed of. Maybe it’s a bad habit like biting your fingernails, or watching Real Housewives of New Jersey, or gambling money you don’t have, abusing prescription drugs, viewing pornography, having an inappropriate thought life or that you engage in self defeating self talk and distorted thinking.
When we hold onto something that causes us to feel guilt, shame & embarrassment we give that thing power over us. The funny thing about secrets…they gain power and strength when they stay in the dark. The secret whispers things in our ears like, “if people knew what you were really about” or “you are dirty and bad because______.” We buy into the lie and make a pact to keep it to ourselves and play pretend that all is well. The secret tells us we are bad, we are less than, that people won’t respect us, that we are not worthy of God’s love. But I have learned that secrets lose their power when we bring them out into the light. Once addressed in the light of day, in the light of God’s grace, love and forgiveness the secrets that once held us captive lose their grip. When we are able to confess our sins, our secrets and our struggles to the Lord and yes even to one another an amazing thing happens….we experience freedom. So in the immortal words of William Wallace of Braveheart fame, we stand in Christ and shout….FREEDOM!
2 Corinthians 4:6
For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.
It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.
Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.