Picture this: A little girl running up into the kitchen while her mom..or dad (heellllerr 21st century) is cooking. She moves the stool over to the stove where her parent is slaving away at a dinner that’s sure to be scrumptious. She climbs up the stool and stares at the boiling deliciousness within the pot. The parent reacts immediately with a warning: Be careful insert name here! That pot is very hot right now and you might burn yourself.
Okay Mom/Dad/Guardian. I know this. Geezuz. Calm Down. Why would I touch something that’s sure to burn me. Wait…you said might? So, that means I might get burnt, or I might not. Hmmm, I wonder what it feels like to be burned. I see it in movies and on tv all the time. People say it hurts. As crazy as it seems, I would like to know for myself. Can’t trust people these days, you know.
Balls to the walls.
Here goes nothing.
Annnnndddddddddd it hurt. Yep. Ow. That burned. Mom/Dad/Guardian was right. Well, at least I know now. MOMMM/DAADDD/GUARDIAN! I need a bandaid. The Disney Princess one? Definitely. The images of those beautiful women who win at life will soothe the aching that has resulted from my idiocy.
Okay, okay. So.This post is obviously not about a silly little girl burning her hand. The burn goes a bit deeper than that. The burn is not a mere flesh wound. It is a wound of the heart.
I am not sure how many people, especially those of the opposite sex, truly understand the complexity fragility of a woman’s heart. It is a mess, fellas. Let me tell ya. Ladies, you know what I mean. One moment our hearts can be filled with so much joy and hope and the next something hits us, whether it is a limping puppy or we see that guy we’ve always loved sharing laughs and smiles with another girl, and our hearts are broken, struck down by the bitterness of life. There have been many times where I rue that day on which our feminine hearts were made. Why, God, why? Why did you have to create them for desiring love and to be desired when the world we were going to be born into would constantly fool us and burn us again and again and again.
That’s like letting your child walk to the stove with a stool and sit on it and watch as they move their hand to the heat knowing the whole time what’s coming. Wait, is that what our parents were doing the whole time. Did they know? Did they know the whole time that their silly child would burn themselves out of curiosity and a desire to know & feel? How cruel.
Maybe they did know. But what they also knew was that that burn would not kill us. No, on the contrary, it would teach us & grow us. Yes, it hurt for awhile. In fact it stung quite a bit and depending on how long you held you hand to that flame the deeper the burn would go. What we can’t or maybe just don’t see at the time of the injury is that we will heal; the burn will callous; we will feel the coolness of air and the sensation of touch once again. Our skin will regrow and form new & stronger than before.
Oh metaphors, where would I be without you?
So, after I consider all this time after time, I take on a new perspective. I am no longer angry at God for the way He formed my heart. I learn to rejoice in it, in-fact. No, I am not saying that things become easy once I accept and am glad in the way I was made. On the contrary, it becomes almost harder in a way because I then knowingly fall back into the same pattern of heartbreak. However, it gets easier and easier to dig myself out of the enticing rabbit hole I happen to stumble in to. One of these days I’ll stumble into my Wonderland. But til then I shall praise the God who made me fearfully & wonderfully. I have been given a sensitive heart. One that feels…well, everything. One that cries at Hallmark commercials, cries tears of joy when someone says I do–and when I say someone I mean the strangers whose wedding videos I watch online, cries at the dawn, and smiles & laughs at the birds as they sing and dance around the treetops. One that takes things way too personally, that can’t help but take on the stress of everyone around. One that is so filled with passion & wanderlust that some days the menial tasks are pure torture, and one that falls for another heart far too easily.
It is hard being who I am. It is hard being a woman. It is hard being a woman of Christ whose heart longs to find another’s to share every detail of life with from the smell and sound of coffee brewing in the morning, to the blank checks that no longer say just my name, to having a family and seeing the world. But rather than let myself be knocked flat on my face when I stumble upon another rabbit hole I think is the right one, I will choose to get right back again. Because let’s be honest. I will never stop stumbling. My heart will always be searching and looking for another’s to beat alongside. This is something I have accepted. But, there will be a difference in the way it regrows and heals. I choose to believe that the reason I keep on falling and getting let down in love again and again and again is because I am not meant to find anyone yet. I am better with me right now. Just me. Working on myself. Pursuing my dreams, pursuing the heart of the Lord. Inside myself is where I will find my fulfillment right now.
The opportunities for growth and adventure are endless.
So, in full knowledge of the danger of touching that burning stove, in full spatial awareness of the holes in the ground that surround my path, I will waltz right up to that cooking surface with the utmost confidence, and dance through, around, and sometimes in those rabbit holes with joy and a heart willing to bend and give but never break or doubt.
I was made to love. To love my God, to love myself, to love the people of this world, the friends and family I have been blessed with.
Society tells me that I am an emotional woman, too weak and far too silly. My God tells me that I am made in His image, made for Love and a desire to see that love manifest itself in some many different ways. Which one will I believe? The one that’s true, of course.
My heart will break gain. I know this full well. But, each time, I will remember and understand more and more who I am, how I was made, and what I was made for. As I said before, perhaps I’ll stumble upon Wonderland one day but until then I will seek out the Love that hides in the dawn of each new day.
This is my Epiphany.