I found a letter buried beneath a stack of old books I was going to donated. I decided to go through the box one more time before putting it in my car.
I picked up the last book, my fingers touched the smooth corners when it was interrupted by a piece of paper that was sticking out.
I opened the pages and slowly unfolded the note. I began to read the words written in my own handwriting.
Dear Locked heart,
I’m not sure how I got here, I don’t remember the exact day.
But I do feel the wall that sits between me and the things that matter.
I wake up everyday feeling a heaviness in my core.
It’s like a chasm in my soul that hinders my ability to feel love or give love.
I drag myself out of bed day after day, and go through the motions of this life and all that is expected of me.
The battle is real, negative thoughts are my constant.
Memories run through my mind like a well-rehearsed play.
Those who have wounded me take center stage.
The darkness overshadows me, binding my lips as I cry for help.
My senses are clouded from the truth.
My soul that once held hope has become cynical and resistant.
So I turn the key and lock the door.
The note is signed, broken forever.
I was reminded of the great sadness that encompassed my life during that time.
I hide my heart behind the veils of religion and found many ways to conceal my true emotions, only to leave me bitter and empty.
The question I pose to you my friend, where do you hide your heart?
Is it hidden beneath your forged smile?
Maybe you too have locked the door, protecting yourself from within.
I know the choice seems logical to protect what is wounded.
But before a wound can heal the bleeding must stop and the wound must lay bare to be cleansed. It needs special attention and sometimes it needs to be scrubbed to allow healing to take place on a deeper level.
My offenses were many and I was not willing to let God into my pain.
So I locked him out and allowed the lesions to fester.
Deep in the dark hollow of my heart a garden of bitter roots began to grow.
It did not happen overnight, but over time.
My bitterness did not need much attention, it just kept growing. Sometimes I’d sit and justifying my resentment.
I had good reasons to be angry. I had the facts laid out of all the unjust things done to me and so my bitterness grew deeper.
No matter what you think.
Unforgiveness is like a poisonous gas that has no scent. You think you are living but in truth you are slowly dying.
You harbor hurt that trails along a steep terrain until you are left with a trail of anger, bitterness, and deep agony. It’s a slippery slope, leaving you in grave danger should you continue to step.
I realized I was holding on so tightly to my hurt that no one was allowed into my heart.
My joy was gone and peace was exchanged for strife and words laced with sarcasm.
“Oh that I would give you the key so that you could indeed set my heart free.” was a whispered prayer I spoke, while wrestling with the thought of letting go.
I picked up my bible and God began to speak truth to me.
I was living in sin, it was plain and simple.
I wanted to continue to justify my choices, but God’s word began to pierce through the darkness of my heart.
Mark 11:25 “And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”
How could I expect God to forgive me when I was unwilling to forgive the ones who hurt me. I spoke the words “I forgive you” many times, but had not truly forgiven.
Forgiveness is a matter of the heart and not just words.
I began to understand that God was really in control and I didn’t need to take matters into my own hands.
Romans 12:21 “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”
I began to repent, “O God would you please forgive me, my heart has become hard and hostile and I have no joy. I am sorry for not trusting you to right all the wrongs done in my life. I surrender In Jesus name.”
I didn’t realize that resentment had become my temptation and when I embraced its bitter fruit, I began to die.
It’s not easy to forgive, but in the spirit, my response is to forgive. I’ve learned that resentment and forgiveness can not live in my heart together.
I must choose!
Forgiveness in the face of resentment equals my freedom.
Are you, my friend, living a life where freedom reigns?
I encourage you to do a heart check. In spending time with God today would you pray Psalm 139:23-24
“Search me O God and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you and lead me along the path of everlasting life.”
freedom is found when we choose to forgive and so is the key to unlock your heart.
Praying for you today,