A suffering soul once asked me how it was I had not become jaded by some of the hardship, pain and significant loss I had experienced over the years. I smiled at her question, thinking it was rather funny until I realized she was serious. My answer to her was simple.
I’m no saint, I told her, I’ve built up walls and broken them down many times throughout my life. I’ve pushed people away and distrusted humanity through and through, closing off my heart entirely to the world, finding solace only in a vast internal darkness of impenetrable comfort. I’ve lived seasons in isolation, so sick of the pain of what I’d endured that I no longer found it worth my while to interact with another human being again.
And yet, it did not remain so. Although I still struggle in this from time to time, somewhere along the way I discovered that I do not really believe in that dark place. Not really. When I set my fear aside and am truly honest with myself, I find that there is something so beautiful in choosing to remain gentle-hearted despite the blows, amidst the fire and storm and blood and brokenness, that it’s all truly worth it in the end. Therin lies a willingness to give up the cold comfort of that dark place within, filled with self-sufficiency, pride, and a ‘right’ to be angry and bitter. For in sacrificing such weighted armor, one finds a depth of love and freedom words can never give justice to. To forgive and bear one’s wounds with grace does not mean to excuse whats been done, but to find freedom from it.