Strongholds. If you think of them like a high-security prison, the four walls surrounding the person encased within would be fear, shame, powerlessness, and hopelessness. If you would have asked me last month what the biggest, most fortified walls in my strongholds are, I would have easily said fear and powerlessness.
I don’t make it much of a secret that I battle fear, and powerlessness is like a first cousin working to keep me subservient to fear. They held me in such tight bondage for more than thirty years that I now actively fight them when I see their evidence in my life. I don’t do this perfectly, and sometimes I hesitate to step into battle with it. But most of the time, they don’t win.
Shame, on the other hand, stood silently by. It is still a suppressing force around me, but it went about its work much more quietly than fear. Much more stealthily than powerlessness. It hid in the shadows, casting its tentacles in subtle ways I dismissed and overlooked because the fight with fear was more prominent.
Perhaps you easily see shame all around you, or perhaps, like me, its presence is more subdued. In either case, as speaker and author Christine Caine says, it’s not the life God has for us.
Keep reading to see my review of her book Unashamed: Drop Your Baggage, Pick Up Your Freedom, Fulfill Your Destiny.
The enemy knows that if he can cause us to hide ourselves—who God made us to be—that it also causes us to lose sight of our identity in God as his image-bearers. Then, because our view of ourselves has been diminished, we shrink from stepping into the destiny God created for us. ~Christine Caine, Unashamed
Unashamed: Description from Amazon
Shame can take on many forms. It hides in the shadows of the most successful, confident and high-achieving woman who struggles with balancing her work and children, as well as in the heart of the broken, abused and downtrodden woman who has been told that she will never amount to anything. Shame hides in plain sight and can hold us back in ways we do not realize. But Christine Caine wants readers to know something: we can all be free.
In Unashamed, Christine reveals the often-hidden consequences of shame—in her own life and the lives of so many Christian women—and invites you to join her in moving from a shame-filled to a shame-free life.
In her passionate and candid style, Christine leads you into God’s Word where you will see for yourself how to believe that God is bigger than your mistakes, your inadequacies, your past, and your limitations. He is not only more powerful than anything you’ve done but also stronger than anything ever done to you. You can deal with your yesterday today, so that you can move on to what God has in store for you tomorrow—a powerful purpose and destiny he wants you to fulfill.
My Thoughts about the Book
What we don’t reveal cannot be healed. ~Christine Caine, Unashamed
Shame reveals itself in various ways.
- Sometimes it’s the deep sense of foreboding, wanting to hide something from everyone in case they condemn us or think less of us.
- Occasionally it’s the unwanted or overlooked feeling that leads us to think we’re worthless or less capable.
- Sometimes it’s simply feeling like someone else has it worse (or better) and therefore our story or problem isn’t as troublesome or significant.
When I first began telling parts of my story, I wondered what others were thinking—and these were pretty much always negative. But God was faithful to bring encouragement, and this kept me moving forward in my healing process.
Far more often, shame trips me up when I feel overlooked. Or less worthy.
- After all, my trauma is nothing compared to many around the world. What can I possibly add to the discussion?
- My cooking and hostess skills don’t measure up to that of my friend who enjoys both. Why should I open my doors to a group of ladies?
- I cannot write like Francine Rivers or Beth Moore. What am I thinking putting a book out on the market?
Shame. And more sneaky shame.
Healing from Shame is Possible
I’ve walked through the process the author describes in the book. It’s something that God began in me many years ago, and as Christine says in the book, this isn’t a quick fix.
It’s painful and time-consuming but worth it.
God didn’t make us for imprisonment behind walls of fear and shame. We aren’t powerless to do anything, and we don’t have to be hopeless about the future.
Jesus came and purchased our freedom, but we must walk into it. As the author writes, He opened our jail cell but we must choose to walk out the door. How? Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the Lord Almighty (Zechariah 4:6).
The Bottom Line – 5 stars
You cannot take people where you are not prepared to go yourself. ~Christine Caine, Unashamed
If you truly want to walk in the freedom God holds out for you, then both courage and heart-wrenching work is necessary. I still have work to do—shame and fear are like that. But I’m making progress.
You can too. The freedom on the other side is indescribably worth it.
About the Author
A sought after speaker around the world, Christine Caine is passionate about the God life and seeing the local Church flourish across the earth. She is a gifted communicator with a heart for reaching the lost and helping people unlock their God-given potential.
Christine is known for her “tell-it-like-it-is,” passionate, (and often humorous) way of communicating profound messages of hope and inspiration. Her message is impacting the lives of leaders, women, youth, the wider church and the unchurched across all continents.
She is one of the pastors and directors of Equip & Empower Ministries, as well as the founder of The A21 Campaign. Together with her husband Nick, and daughters Catherine and Sophia, Christine spends much of the year traveling to reach the lost, strengthen leadership, champion the cause of justice and build the local Church globally.
Christine’s powerful testimony has been an inspiration to thousands of people across the globe. Chris comes from a background of childhood abuse, which she refers to frequently in her messages.