Updated: Sep 11, 2019
My dear friend, one of my precious secret keepers, confessed to me in the wee hours of the morning, sitting on my beat-up couch, that she had been abused. Single Mom. Babysitter. Little Girl. Crazy confusing, but finally confessed. And the horrible details can be traced just like your story. But this was hers. And the thing I couldn't get out of my head was her shame. She still felt ashamed! Forty years later, ugly old crimson-colored shame like the inside of that barn's roof line-- untouched by time and weathering. I couldn't coax, convince or coerce her to not feel it. That natural response, even when another has terribly wronged us, is to carry shame. We haul it on our backs like it's an oxygen tank and we won't be able to breathe without it. So I wrote her a *poem. And asked her to trade grace for shame. I think she did. Or at least she tried. The last time I had a heart-to-heart with her, she truly was filled with radiant joy. All of my peeps live far away, so as we said good-bye, she said that 'God makes beautiful things out of the dust, that He makes beautiful things out of us.' I cried to think that my secret keeper found one of life's best secrets tucked away in her story: "No one who hopes in You (the Lord) will ever be put to shame." Psalm 25:3
*You can see the poem I wrote her entitled In the Shadow of Shame under the Poetry Tab. The Barn Painting entitled Her Story also attaches to this story and poem.