In the midst of Sunday morning worshipers a small, blonde-hair, blue-eyed figure stood before me. The sad condition of his heart was evident. With shoulders drooped forward and head bent low—shame enveloped his body and spirit. Burying his face into my legs I leaned down and scooped him up and held him close. His morning tantrum and defiant behavior ceased. He was silent—finally. Yet as much as the screaming may have come to an end, his heart was noticeably unresolved. I held him, rocked him, and comforted him.

I sensed in my spirit this moment to be different than previous parenting occasions. It didn’t seem right to lecture or even punish my four year old. I wanted to tell him he was forgiven, but even that seemed to miss the mark.
“Lord what does he need to hear?”
I pondered the Lord’s reply as the music in the worship center grew increasingly intense. People young and old sang in unity the words that comfort every soul—the truth of God’s love.
Love is a powerful force.
I took my son’s face and turned it toward mine. He resisted at first, but soon yielded. When his eyes met mine they looked big, anticipating a reprimand. I stifled his expectations by deliberately and thoughtfully speaking the words, “I love you”. His eyes grew bigger as if waiting for news of his punishment. I said it a few more times and his eyes softened, his countenance lightened, and snuggled happily back into my arms.
Love is a powerful force.
As the worship continued in the sanctuary, this personal moment with my son magnified within my heart. The Lord impressed there were others in the crowd gripped with the same condition. Even though my natural eyes saw people standing upright with heads lifted high, my spiritual eyes saw shame wrapped tightly around hearts.
Shame is a powerful force.
It’s the human condition. Whether we are the recipient or the executor of embarrassment, dishonor, humiliation, or indignity we have all experienced shame. Unhealed it can leave our soul wounded with an inability to trust or even forgive—anyone.
Shame is a powerful force.
But Love is a far greater one.
For it was Love who rose from His throne, left heaven, and stepped into our world. His presence alone soothes the aches in our hearts. Carefully chosen words escape His lips only as a whisper, yet resonate within our soul like peals of thunder. Shame-breaking holy words—
I love you
releases forgiveness, healing, restoration, and honor over every deep, dark, and broken area of our heart.
Love is a powerful force indeed.
Will you agree with God and declare over yourself, “He loves me”?
Listen in on this week’s Relevant Worship playlist and share your journey—with me…with someone.
Relevant Worship
How He Loves by Kim Walker-Smith
Restoration by David Brymer
You Are My All in All by Gaither Vocal Band
Reflective Scripture
But God–so rich is He in His mercy! Because of and in order to satisfy the great and wonderful and intense love with which He loved us…Ephesians 2:4 Amplified
But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. Romans 5:8 NLT
He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside quiet waters. He restores my soul. Psalm 23:2-3a NASB