Thursday, May 7, 2009

The ZigZag Café

We will be convening here at the ZigZag café, Suisse, on Thursdays for conversation and dialogue. I invite you to stop by every Thursday for the question of the day. Your thoughts and participation are most welcome. Pull up a stool, avec un café, un thé, ou un chocolat chaud, et un croissant, and join in here on Thursday at the ZZ café.

For today:

How does false shaming in the church affect you or others? Would you think that this makes it more difficult to accept that we are sinners?

8 comments:

Lukas Kuhs said...

Affect? Definitely!

When I first came to my church, someone told me "important things to know" about someone else!!! (I don't know, why I did not turn away instantly!)

Maybe we go for having this lead over the others... Maybe it is just so interesting...

How does it affect? We feel better than others. I think the greatest hindrance to awareness of sin is looking/searching at others instead of God. We are always better than the other - at least in some points - but we will never be better as God or even as good as God.

Lukas

Greg said...

Lukas,
Thanks for your thoughts. Gossip can be devastating and all the while deluding us that somehow we are better than the one being talked about. To shame someone like this is a highly dubious manouever.

What about if it was you being directly and falsely shamed by someone? Do you think if a person is consistently shamed like this it would be harder to say "I'm a sinner"?

Lukas und Céline Kuhs said...

As a confident person I would say, that I would know, that this is not true. This might lead to a lack of awareness of my sin, since all I hear is not true. Eventually I might believe it, but then I would feel bad not careless.

This is "speculation" though, it did never happen to me. SDG!

Greg said...

Lukas,
Glad to hear this has not happened to you. I wager that false shaming happens all too often and does some radical damage.

Susan said...

I came by on Thursday but didn't know what you meant by 'false shaming', even now I'm not sure. I've never experienced it myself.

Greg said...

Susan,
Thanks. Yes, perhaps I should have clarified. What I was trying to do was make a distinction between true shame - things that one should be ashamed of doing and things that other people falsely shame one about. This might be, for example, a failure to measure up to a standard of human tradition.

Susan said...

oic, the false shaming I have experienced has not come from Christians but from myself. I have shamed myself for not measuring up to standards that I put on myself. Fortunately Christ has freed me from most of that.

I think, also, it is a trick the devil like to use to make us feel unworthy and useless. If the devil can also get us to think other people are shaming us as well then it is even more powerful for him.

Greg said...

Susan,
I believe that what you describe happens frequently. False shaming often begins at home. I wonder though if it doesn't have it's source in the standards and models that become ours from others.

Yes, and maybe one of the devil's tactics along the lines you mention is to aim to convince people that they're not sinners. False shaming by others can sometimes have that affect.