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Workbook day 4 (PDF content)

Day 4
Guilt And Shame

According to Dictionary.com guilt means:
  • The fact or state of having committed an offense, crime, violation, or wrong, especially against moralor penal law; culpability
  • A feeling of responsibility or remorse for some offense, crime, wrong, etc., whether real or imagined
  • Conduct involving the commission of such crimes, wrongs, etc.
According to Dictionary.com shame means:
  • The painful feeling arising from the consciousness of something dishonorable, improper, ridiculous ,etc., done by oneself or another
  • Susceptibility to this feeling
  • Disgrace; ignominy
  • A fact or circumstance bringing disgrace or regret

Guilt or feeling guilty, reflects an awareness of how our actions have injured someone.
Shame reflects the awareness of how we feel about our actions.

Q: Can you remember a time when you said or did something that hurt another person and you felt guilty? Briefly describe:
Q: Can you remember a time when you felt shame as a result of your actions?

Guilt and shame are powerful driving forces. The question is; where are they driving you to?

Effects of Shame:
  • A negative opinion of yourself– This cripples confidence and hope.
  • Self-pity – Shame can cause men to view themselves as victims, blaming others and condemning ourselves for our actions.
  • Isolation – This is a main cause of actions. It avoids all risks.

There can be a positive effect of shame!
"Shame usually results in guilt and self-deprecation, but it can also lead us to search for God and His answers. Our inner, undeniable need for personal significance was created to make us search for Him. He alone can fulfill our deep need." - Dr. Robert McGee in Search for Significance (101)

Keys to defeat shame:
  1. Take a risk and step into the light.
  2. It will take courage to step. You are not alone. Courage is not the absence of fear, it’s the conquering of it.
  3. Begin to separate yourself from the past and embrace the potential of your future.