“Carnival Pirate” by Hadessa Photography 

I have a confession to make. I am not proud of it. You might judge me. But here goes nothing. I watch the
Real Housewives franchise. I’m not religious about it—I don’t DVR it or anything—but when I am nursing my baby and have some time to zone out, the Real Housewives of Orange County or Beverly Hills is my drug of choice.
I might as well be watching bowel surgery—it repulses me but I can’t look away. What bothers (yet compels) me most about the women is that their deep insecurity masquerades as confidence. It plays out in jealousy, crazy amounts of plastic surgery, competition, and mistrust. I actually feel a lot of sadness and compassion for them. But, I can’t stop staring. 
We are often told that confidence will solve our problems. Do I want to be confident? Totally.
However, confidence is a yielding place—a stop on a deeper journey to true security and freedom.
I think we were made for more than confidence. Our true destination is Shamelessness.
We’ll be checking out Shamelessness in the weeks to come. For now, check out this chart for a quick look at the difference between an Ashamed Woman woman, a Confident woman, and a Shameless woman. May you be more than a desperate housewife. May you live shamelessly this week. 
Fig. 1.1
ASHAMED WOMAN
CONFIDENT WOMAN
SHAMELESS WOMAN
I am a mistake.
As long as I look good,
I am happy with myself
I am fearfully and wonderfully made– no matter how life changes my appearance.
(Psalm 139)
I missed the mark.
I can work towards perfecting myself.
I admit my weaknesses and pride, because God’s power is perfect in my vulnerability.
(2 Corinthians 12: 7-10)
I deserve to be treated with disrespect and will give my heart away to any guy who comes along.
I am easy-going about my relationship with guys. I can get involved, without getting attached. I do not let them hurt me.
I am a daughter of the King and deserve to be treated like one.
I will not give my heart away to anyone or anything less than what my heavenly daddy
has in store for me.
(Romans 8: 15-17)
I should be Other
than how I was created.
I have the right to change my appearance, with any means necessary– no matter how it impacts my loved ones.
God created me uniquely
 in His image.
I am so thankful that I can live a healthy lifestyle.
(Genesis 2)
I am unlovable.
As long as I can garner the attention of the opposite sex, I feel good about myself.
Nothing can separate me
from the love of Christ.
Because He loves me,
I am content.
(Romans 8:35)
I cannot count on anyone.
I don’t need anyone.
I am self-reliant
I can cast all of my burdens, cares, and anxieties on Him 
because He cares for me.
(1 Peter 5:7)
I can control my feelings through negative behavior:
drinking or drugs, misuse of eating, unhealthy sexuality, excessive work, etc.
I can take control of my situation.
I have no power over my addictive personality, but when my shame or discontentment condemns me- He is greater than my heart and He can help me.
(1 John 3:20)
There is no purpose for my life/
I am trapped. The best life I will ever lead is one in my fantasies.
I am in charge of my own destiny. I make things happen for myself. 
I can make my fantasies come true.
 God can do immeasurably more
than I can ask or imagine.
His plan for my life is bigger and better than I could have picked.
I will follow Him daily.
(Ephesians 3:20, Proverbs 3:6, Jeremiah 29:11)
I am the sum of my past mistakes
I can overcompensate for my past by hiding from it
or covering it up.
The old has gone, the new has come. He makes all things new. He rebuilds my past to bring glory, freedom, and joy
to my life. I am never covered with shame!
(2 Corinthians 5:17,
Psalm 34:17)
I do not belong.
I am fine all by myself.
I am God’s.
He has called me by name. I am the apple of His eye. I am never alone. He has given me a community and my own gifts to offer to it.
(Psalm 17:8 Isaiah 43:1,
1 Corinthians 12: 12- 31 and 13)
Shameless Questions
  1. As I mentioned in Monday’s post, as a high schooler, I loved the punk rock music scene. But, I never felt like I fully belonged. Do you remember a time of not belonging? How did that feel?
  2. God describes himself as a husband- do you know that you belong with Him?  If you find that hard to believe, ask God to give you some tangible reminders of His love this week. 
  3. Are you experiencing new areas of shame or insecurity? What are they? Can you ask God to help you find beauty in those places. (My friends and I recently shared our areas of fantasy and insecurity. It was pretty hilarious. Check this out.)  
  1. Look over the chart above. Do you relate to any of the descriptions?
  1. Have you ever attempted to overcome your shame in an unhealthy way?
  1. If you have a story of how God is helping you overcome shame, I’d love to hear it. You can message me here.
  
Prayer
God, I am so grateful you call yourself a faithful Husband.
Your heart is so tender and affectionate towards me that you can’t help but love.
 You replace my shame with joyful song. Thank you! Thank you!
 God, when I am tempted to dwell on my insecurities or remain stuck in my shame,
help me to focus on you and your word instead.
 Help me to live shamelessly so that I can love you more freely and obey you.
Amen. 

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