In the steamy outback of Australia, Laura and Nicklas prepare to battle intensely hot days and extremely cold nights, poisonous spiders, flash floods and a parched, barren and unforgiving landscape, all while naked. Laura is equipped with her fire-starter and Nicklas with his machete, and they launch into the tasks of building shelter and starting a fire before the storm clouds let loose. But trouble quickly arises as Laura rebukes Nicklas for his poor attempt at building adequate shelter. And her rebuke is ratified as we find the two huddled together, shivering and wet, all while Nicklas cries, questioning what he had gotten himself into. The following day, desperate for warmth, Laura attempts to start a fire. Days two and three go by, and Laura experiences no success. Finally, on the eve of day three, Nicklas tries and succeeds. But is Laura happy? Absolutely not. She feels frustrated and outdone and that she has now been unjustly relegated to the “woman’s work.” Laura’s anger simmers and turns into fury, then rage, and she eventually gets kicked off the show. Laura left the show naked and ashamed.

Think I’m making this up? Nope, I didn’t. This was Season 5, Episode 9 of the Discovery Channel’s hit show, Naked and Afraid, where each week a man and a woman, who meet for the first time, team up to survive in a remote wilderness for 21 days with nothing but a single, personal item.

Psalm 31:1 – In you, O Lord, I have taken refuge; let me never be put to shame; deliver me in your righteousness. Turn your ear to me, come quickly to my rescue; be my rock of refuge, a strong fortress to save me. Since you are my rock and my fortress, for the sake of your name, lead and guide me.

Lessons Learned

As I watched Nicklas and Lara, something struck me as being vaguely familiar. I recall hearing a story about a man and a woman who were placed in unchartered territory, designed to thrive in the elements and enjoy bright, sunny days, mingle with the lions, tigers and bears, and figure out what to eat and what not to eat – all while naked. Both were intentionally, beautifully, and wonderfully created to inhabit this land, and both were equipped with the one tool needed to survive, sweet communion with God. And life was good. Life was perfect until the woman encountered a snake, who did what snakes do – deceive and distort the truth. At the snake’s convincing, the woman ate the forbidden fruit, and she then convinced the man to eat the forbidden fruit, and both found themselves aware of their nakedness and their shame for the first time. Clamoring for fig leaves, seeking to cover their guilt, sorrow, and confusion, both soon discovered the harsh realities of being kicked out of the Garden of Eden, destined to live life naked and ashamed. 

Lessons Lived

As always, I look for life application of these lessons. See, God also intentionally, beautifully and wonderfully created me with everything I need to survive this rough terrain and uncertain crossroads on this journey called life. Because of the elements of destruction threatening to overtake me, I too clamor for shelter or covering. And like Laura on Naked and Afraid, I sometimes react irrationally and sometimes, like Eve, I take cover and hide behind the fig leaves of guilt, hurt, hopelessness and shame. 

Maybe you also have a host of fig leaves that feebly cover you. And if you don’t, I surely have enough to go around.  Do any of these sound familiar?

  •  The fig leaf of worry about whether my children can withstand the temptations and challenges that plague them;
  • The fig leaves of fear and doubt as to whether I can fulfill God’s call to ministry and truly trust that He can do what I am unable to do as He has promised;
  • The fig leaf of guilt and shame as I continue to carry the burdens of my past;
  • The fig leaf of pain as I continue to battle asthma and allergies and numbness and fatigue; 
  • The fig leaf of hopelessness as the world around me gives way to violence, hatred, and hurt. 

But, (Oh how I love God’s big buts), I’m so glad I serve a God who had a plan for our salvation from day one. Despite Adam and Eve’s sin and their condemnation to death, God provided them a chance for eternal life. And He has afforded me and you the same “no restrictions exchange policy.” See, for every fig leaf that I choose to surrender to Him, He promises to exchange them for white garments, washed in the blood of the Lamb so that you and I no longer need to be clothed in our fig leaves of shame (Revelation 3:18). If I were to exchange my fig leaves of robes of righteousness, my life on the other side of sin might look like this:


Worry for Worship

Fear for Faith

Doubt for Deliverance

Pain for Purpose

Hopelessness for Happiness


The act of surrender is quite simple – it’s a choice. If we simply choose to give God our all, He’ll do the rest. Give Him your all – your hurt, pain, fears, joys, talents, passion, guilt, and shame – and He can use it, transform it, or remove it. Won’t you give Him your all today? Won’t you experience life free of the fig leaves that hide the true you? Let’s live naked! Naked and Unashamed as we surrender our all to God, the only one Who can save us.


  • How does Psalm 31:1 speak to you?
  • What “fig leaves” of shame, guilt, or fear do you wear?
  • What are your thoughts regarding the act of surrender being a choice?
  • If you surrendered your “fig leaves,” what could God bless you with instead?
  • What are your personal LIFE Lessons?
    • Liberation: What new insights have you gained that have freed you from past thoughts or practices?
    • Inspiration: In what ways have you been spiritually, emotionally or mentally motivated to live for Christ?
    • Fortification: What additional scriptural texts, passages or stories can reinforce and strengthen you against the attacks of the enemy?
    • Edification: How might you share your story to edify others and bring glory to God?


As you process, digest, and apply what’s been shared, here are a few songs from my “I Surrender All” Playlist. Listen and let the music infiltrate your soul. Read the lyrics and let the words encourage you. And I pray that you’ll be blessed as I was.