We all to some extent have walls around our heart, and some walls are stronger than others. Those close to me will know that mine are very strong. And most people don’t even know they are up (and I know that I’m not the only one). I have a tendency to say enough to make people think I’m being vulnerable but really they don’t know anything that I’m not comfortable with being general knowledge.
This often means that I hold people at arms length, without them even knowing it. I do this to try to protect myself from people who I think could hurt me, even those who only give me reasons to trust them. Because the small chance I could be hurt (and by that I mean abandoned), is too big for me.
Over the past few months God has been taking me on a journey to stop doing this. He has shown me that by having these walls up I am ultimately not trusting him or those he has placed in my life. And I need to start, because otherwise I am disregarding his will. Not doing is terrifying, because it involves showing people the most vulnerable parts of me. However the most vulnerable parts of me or hurting, broken and bleeding. Do I really want to let people in to that?
But thats where is good to remember that this isn’t about other people. It’s about God and about whether I am willing to let him heal me, even if he uses other people to do this. Although this process also means not avoiding my pain (which is something I am a pro at).
But once I start to allow God in, these man-made walls assembled with wood, that leave splitters in whoever tries to get near them, fall down, he breaks them down. Once he does this, he doesn’t leave us how he found us (broken, bleeding and vulnerable), he heals the hurt behind. This often feels more painful than if we just dealt with them ourselves. But this makes sense.
When you were a kid and you hurt you knee by falling off your bike (or when you a grown adult and have been cycling nearly everyday for 10 months…) getting it cleaned often makes the wound hurt more but then it allows it to heal properly.
And while God does this he guards our hearts for us. He guards them with peace, love and grace (Philippians 4: 6) . And as a result we don’t need to worry about whether or not others will hurt us because we know ultimately they will. But God will always protect us, provide for us, and never leave nor forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). This allows us to love even those who do hurt us, and allows us to continue to let people in even if it is painful.