Motorcycle Underwear

I’m eleven years old and I’m wearing underwear that’s covered with little pictures of a man on a motorcycle. Being homeschooled, I’m always a bit behind on the fashion curve and I don’t fully realize that it’s not cool anymore to wear underwear with artwork on it. So I wear motorcycle underwear…to a Little League game. But this doesn’t bother me because after all, who’s going to see my underwear? Or so I think. What I don’t realize is that my baseball pants are made of a partially see-through material that allows a careful observer to pick up on any underwear artwork. With normal drawers this wouldn’t be a problem, but with motorcycle underwear, well that’s another matter.

I don’t realize my fatal mistake until one of my older, cooler teammates says, “What’s on your underwear?” I play dumb, acting as if I don’t know what he’s talking about. Then he nails me. “There’s motorcycles on your underwear! Hey guys check this out, Stephen’s wearing motorcycle underwear.” I try to play it off as funny but it doesn’t work. I’m embarrassed and my face burns with shame. Needless to say, I never wear the motorcycle underwear again.

I wish I could say that the motorcycle underwear incident caused me the most shame of my life. But it didn’t. There are sins in my past that I am truly and deeply ashamed of. Just the thought of these sins make me feel ashamed of myself. These are the sins I don’t like talking about, sins I don’t want my friends to find out about. It’s these sins that prove that I’m not just a sinner, I’m a wicked sinner.

All of us have sins of this nature hiding in our pasts, like skeletons in a closet. All of us have committed wicked, ungodly, perverse sins that shame us before God and men. All of us are shameful sinners.

It’s my shameful sin that makes the sacrifice of Christ so glorious. Jesus Christ, the perfect, holy One, took my shameful acts upon Himself. Christ never had so much as a sinful thought, yet He willingly bore all of my wicked, disgusting, shameful sin. God punished Christ as if He had done my shameful deeds. God looked upon Christ as if He was the shameful sinner. 2 Corinthians 5:21 puts it this way: “ For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

Let your heart overflow with thankfulness to Jesus today. He bore your shame so that you can stand before God unashamed. How sweet is the sacrifice of Christ.


  • Mark Altrogge says:

    Your motorcycle underwear wasn’t as bad as the Teenage Mutant Ninja Underwear….

    Great post Stephen! I still have times when past sins of mine pop into my mind and I wince, once again having to remind myself of Christ’s blood that covered them.


  • Stephen Altrogge says:

    Oh what I wouldn’t give to have those Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle underwear…

  • beth says:

    …this is awkward.

  • ken says:

    Isn’t it something the way things from our distant past can pop up like that and still bother us! We’ve definitely all been there!

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi Stephen,
    Just recently discovered your blog – thanks for your cross centred focus. I’ve appreciated that about your songs too. Would it be OK if I occasionally printed one of your blog entries in our church newsletter to encourage others? (I’d cite the source of course!)
    Grace to you in the name of our Saviour

  • Stephen Altrogge says:


    Feel free to print off whatever you like. I’m glad it encourages you!

  • Jennifer Altrogge says:

    Hilarious story! Why didn’t you tell me this BEFORE we got married? I see how it is.

    Love you,

  • Stephen Altrogge says:

    I forgot about it until I wrote this. Are you still glad you married me?

  • Jennifer Altrogge says:

    Am I still glad I married you? What kind of question is that? You know I love you, and this story has only confirmed that love.

  • Lance says:

    I may be able to top your motorcycle underwear.

    I played one year of little league football. My mom washed my pants with a mixed load, and my practice pants turned pink.

    So I practiced each week in pink football pants.

    Like you, though, that’s not the kind of shame that keeps me awake at night. It’s this dreaded flesh.

  • Stephen Altrogge says:


    Brutal. You may have me beat…

  • fluff says:

    MArK/Stephen:re: teenage mutant ninja underwear: reading this blog is like that very ill guy Mark always used to talk about who watched Marx Brothers movies and laughed so hard until he got healed…

  • Biker Jacket says:

    As I read through your post, it brought to mind events from my own past, when others might belittle me for the way I spoke or the way I dressed. At the time, I did experience shame, but in time I learned that it was shame i should be feeling…but pity for those who would wound me in such a manner.

    How small did they feel in their own lives, that they had to make others feel smaller in order to experience a sense of self-worth?

    yes, there things that I have done that I am rightly ashamed of, and although I know that The Lord has forgiven me, it is still very hard to forgive myself, but it does get easier. After all, if God in all his glory can forgive me, then who am I to say differently? He gave His Son that I might experience life eternal.

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