A Good First Step: A First Draft of Something Longer

Tripp Hudgins
8 min readJan 14, 2023

God and Shame

There’s a story that I’ve been told again and again. It’s simply this, Jesus takes on all our shame through his death on the cross. Sin and shame are synonyms. And yet, so often, we turn that around and make the whole Christian endeavor about feeling more shame, about burdening ourselves with shamefulness disguised as humility or worse, love.

Now, please understand. Shame is an emotion just like any other and it has something to teach us. Yes. And, it is a sticky, goopy kind of thing that grows by an order of magnitude (West Wing reference) if we’re not careful. It can become, as my Mean Therapist says, a second personality. We can mistake our Shame for our Self. Ain’ that a kick in the head?

The whole Shame Spiral is something we learn along the way. We learn it from a variety of potential sources. Religion is effective. Public Education is another. So too are sports, the arts, and the Boy Scouts. Sometimes we learn it through traumas. If that is you, please reach out when you feel overwhelmed. That’s nothing to treat lightly.

Back to Jesus, the cross, and why the cross alleviates shame.

Victory over Death. Again, it’s a simple tale that is hard to live. Jesus, through his life, death, and resurrection (That’s the offensive…

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Tripp Hudgins

he/him/all y'all — author, scholar, musician, and minister