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The Glory and the Shame

...[Jesus] took Peter, John and James with him and went up onto a mountain to pray. As he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became as bright as a flash of lightning. Two men, Moses and Elijah, appeared in glorious splendor, talking with Jesus. They spoke about his departure, which he was about to bring to fulfillment at Jerusalem. Luke 9:28-31 NIV

You would think that this transfiguration of Jesus, where he is revealed in all his glory, would be the apex of his time on earth. The disciples finally see him as he really is. What is left for him to do? For us it would be enough. Nothing better or more glorious could be seen or had. This is it!

But for Jesus, this is not it. This is not the apex of his time on earth. This is not what he has come to do. In the upside-down kingdom of God, Christ’s highest point comes not in dazzling, heavenly glory but in the shame and disgrace of the cross. That which was despised he embraced and now invites us to do the same.

Can I? It is fun and exciting when the light shines brightly on me, when others applaud what I do, say and am. But what of the cross? What happens when everything seems to fall apart, when shame, reproach and disgrace colour my world black? What then? Can I believe this serves a greater purpose than bright lights and glory? Can I eschew the praise and embrace the pain? Can I believe that this is where God will do his greatest work in and through me? Am I willing?

Father, I want to fix my eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of my faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of your throne. I know that the things I suffer and endure now can’t compare with the glory that you will reveal in me and so I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings. Let me not be ashamed, Lord, because I believe in you and am convinced that you are able to guard all that I have given you. I give you all I have. So be it.*


*Hebrews 12:2, Romans 8:18, Philippians 3:10, 1 Timothy 1:12

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About the Author

DEBBIE HAUGHLAND CHAN
WINNIPEG, MANITOBA, CANADA

I'm married (35 years in December 2008) with four grown sons. I love my city (Winnipeg) and my country (Canada) and promote them both to whoever will listen. God (through Jesus Christ) is the biggest part of my life. I am learning to let him take control of all areas--though I do better at this some times more than others.

I have written a book that's recently been published about part of my journey with God. In it I tell how God confronted me with the same-sex attraction issues I've struggled with all my adult life and how he led me through them to a deeper and more meaningful relationship with him. God is amazing—his forgiveness, his love, his movement in our lives when we allow him and so much more. I suspect God will never run out of things to teach me or ways to make me grow and that’s a good thing (though often very painful).

I suppose I can say that what gives me the greatest pleasure in life is telling others about…

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Reviews of Searching for Love

If you have read the book, I would love to hear your thoughts on it. You may e-mail me at debbiehaughland@gmail.com or post them in the comments section below.

A Real Testimony
I finished your book. A real testimony to what God does for us.
Leona March 3, 2009
I Had Tears Coming

I sat down to read it about a week later and ended up finishing it the same night. At first I admit I was a little bored and thought that the whole book was about a battle all in your mind, but as I continued reading this creeping thought came over me of a different...struggle in my own life, that I would never in my right mind have shared with anyone accept maybe God. I've mentioned your book to a few people because it stirs up age-old controversies that I have myself argued and wondered about, namely about whether or not homosexuality can be cured or just managed like alcoholism--you just have to stay away from temptation. I noticed at the end of your book that your struggle story …