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Breaking the Spirit of Shame and Performance

In this session Abi shares her insight into performance and shame, and how they are robbing believer's of their true identity.

Lesson Plan

Lesson Plan

Lesson Plan

Lesson Plan

Lesson Plan

Course Overview

Unit 1
Understanding of Worship
Unit 2
Keeping Community and Culture
Unit 3
Knowing Your Heart and Identity
Unit 4
Growth and Service
Unit 5
Worship Team Structure and Dynamics

Breaking the Spirit of Shame and Performance

Abi Stumvoll

Abi shares her background in shame and performance. As the only child of parents who had suffered many miscarriages, the accuser stepped in and told her it was her job to make them happy - she was to make them happy, she was to fix their pain, etc. She spent her whole childhood performing to prove that she was enough. She had an encounter with the Lord and heard Him say “your job is to be loved, and to love”.

Shame and performance are the first consequences of sin. The enemy convinced Eve that she wasn’t enough in the garden and that she could be more. After they ate the fruit their eyes were opened and for the first time, they judged themselves.


Shame is: there is something innately wrong within me.

- God never wanted us to eat from the tree because he never wanted us to think that there was a flaw in us. He never wants us to question ourselves. That we could be any more than we already are. He wanted us to walk securely in love with Him.


Performance is: I’m going to find a solution so that no one can see the thing that I’m ashamed of. I’m going to do something that distracts you from the thing that I think you won’t love me.

- Shame breaks covenant connection. Shame holds you back from being fully known.

“If you confess the little things, you will never have a big thing to confess”

- Confess the heart posture. Then there is no room for that thing to grow “in the dark” and become an issue.

- Shame shuts us off from love, and love is the only thing that can heal and fix. We have to stay connected to love.

- If we cut ourselves off from love when we are not doing everything “right” we are cutting ourselves off from the vine.

- Shame makes you want to hide and like you’re not good enough. Anytime someone loves you through your shame they heal that out of you.

- There is nothing that makes you deserve to be cut off from the vine (from love) - Jesus paid for it and the enemy can’t have it back.


The birthplace of Shame and Performance:

- Eve’s original calling was to be the mother of many - “be fruitful and multiply”. After God laid down the curses, Adam turns to Eve and names her “Eve”. 

- Abi believes God explained His purposes so perfectly to Adam and Eve that Adam caught it and named his wife “mother of life” to remind her of her original calling. Only now she will be the mother of the mother of the mother who births the one that will crush the serpent. Part of God’s plan was to have Adam catch the vision and proclaim it prophetically over his wife.

- In His love God removed us from the garden, otherwise, we would live there eternally thinking there were things wrong with us. There is nothing that can separate us from His love because He proclaimed it right there in the garden and then saved us from the eternal torment of staying in the garden with shame on us.


When you perform, you project an image. And when people compliment that image you don’t receive it. You can’t receive love for something that you are not. You have to be fully you, be fully real, to receive real love from people.

We are supposed to feast at the Lord’s banquet of love. His banner of me is love.

Abi closes in prayer for the students.