2nd blog post from AU. July 25, 2011
Guarding Our Hearts.
Why is it important to guard our hearts? With all the new relationships I am building and all the old relationships I try to maintain, I cannot help but think about how much people have to do with my life and its purpose. Relationships matter more to me than a lot of things, but with all of these relationships come a lot of complexities. New or old, I find that every relationship requires a level of discernment, sensitivity and wisdom. Vulnerability is one of the scariest but most refreshing necessities to relationships. We are essentially carrying the hearts of others. We allow others to carry our hearts.
I am by no means a professional at handling relationships. Much of why I am writing this, as with other posts, is for the sake of processing how to think about various things.
Tonight I asked myself the question, “Why is it so important to guard my heart?” Scripture obviously states that we should guard our hearts for it is the wellspring of life. But what does that mean to me? What does that look like for unique individuals that we each are? Where is the balance between guarding our hearts and letting people in? How do people even go through the process of falling in love and getting married? Although falling in love is a seemingly common practice or concept, I find myself constantly marveling at it. Is it simply by choosing to press through fears? How much of it is faith and how much is confident understanding and trust? When do we know it’s okay to give people more of our hearts? When is it wisest to hold back and not let them in?
Last Sunday, the guest pastor told us the story of meeting his wife and the journey to their marriage. She, a Chinese Malaysian with an American accent, and he, a pure-blooded Englishman. A combination of cultures I have never heard of in my life! And yet they work. After she had finished her studies or work in the UK, she went off to live in Africa for an entire year without him. He actually flew to her to propose! That just blows my mind. The love, commitment, and trust extended between the two of them. They trusted and loved each other so much that the distance and difference of cultural influences was something they simply learned to work through.
I am just so in awe of that story. Probably because I find it encouraging for someone like me who is multi-cultured by default. I’m never really sure whether people feel they can relate or if relating in that respect is even relevant. I think purpose, and being able to partner in that purpose, trumps cultural identity. So in the end, relationships require a lot of prayer and an equal amount of discernment. Once it is established there are three C’s: Christ, Communication and Commitment. I find that relevant to any type of close-knit relationship, not solely marriages.
The heart is the wellspring of life. It is not just something to be given away nor should it be kept to ourselves. It is the storehouse for our deepest desires, ambitions, and vision. The heart carries the depths of our uniqueness; therein lies our purpose. Perhaps that is why it is so precious to guard. We can easily lose sight of all our heart carries when we hurriedly give it away...