for there is a shame that leads to sin
and a shame that is honourable and gracious.
Do not be too severe on yourself,
do not let shame lead you to ruin.
Do not refrain from speaking when it will do good,
and do not hide your wisdom. – Ecclesiasticus 4:21-23 (NJB)

*   *   *

When shame and guilt – or even depression – leave us feeling unworthy of God’s presence, Satan is at work. Yet our low frame of mind is often when we need most to turn to the Spirit of Christ for healing, and then we often receive the most vivid insights as well.

There are many reasons there is night and then there is day in our spiritual awareness.

*   *   *

Much less can I believe, that he would suffer the greatest Part of the World to live without them [the Scriptures] (as they do) were there no other Means appointed for their Salvation.  Admit then here, that the Creature in such a Strait, not knowing what to do, betakes itself to enquire of the Lord by Prayer; alas! what will that avail, unless it receive an Answer? which is already granted not to be found in Scripture, neither can it now be had by the meer literal Priesthood, nor by their pretended Urim and Thummim; and say they (who cry up solely Scripture to be the Rule of Faith and Life). (Elizabeth Bathurst, 1655?-1685)

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