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When things become dilapidated, they need repair. You can drive down any inner-city and see the amount of work that would need to be done in order to rebuild it into a thriving economy. Things are built and then become old and need repair. Sometimes that repair comes from the tearing down of the physical structure and rebuilding on a new foundation.
So goes a new heart. Sometimes we need to build that on a new foundation.
There comes a point is some people’s lives where all of the pain and hurt that they have carried for years comes crashing down on them. It may be the pain and hurt that you have caused others or that you inflict upon yourself. You are suddenly able to see what was once clouded by fear and judgement. This is an awakening. Put simply, an awakening is a recognition, realization or coming into awareness of something. Many times, this will happen with a renewal of interest in religion. Other times, it happens when you are at your weakest and have been broken and finally see the light! Some people may never have this period of awakening. Some may gradually see who they want to become and work daily throughout their life to become that person. For others, that can be a real challenge. For me, that period of awakening shook me to my core on a level I never thought possible for a human being.
You see it’s easy for people to see small changes in you and accept them. But when you have a mental breakthrough and your entire being changes, that can be hard for a lot of people to accept. There are few beliefs on this earthly world that a person can all of a sudden “change for the better.” Life would be much easier if we were all able to mature at a rate that is considered to be “normal”. Instead, some people have to experience a single event that completely changes the makeup of their being.
To simply show you the train of thought one may go through, I’ll share this example:
“I’ve hurt people in very selfish ways!”
OLD: You simply say, “I’m sorry” and move on. Of course there is some emotion behind the apology but for the most part, you ask for their forgiveness and move to the next thing. That’s your train of thought. NEW: Realizing the amount of hurt you have caused people because of your selfish ways becomes very devastating. You not only begin accepting and wanting forgiveness for those hurts caused to others, but you begin to realize that the hardest part is forgiving yourself.
I’m gonna be honest; this awakening is freaking scary!! Giving up control of the life and person that you were born with is the hardest thing to do. You don’t have a clue what this new person is going to look like and if it will be accepted. The “old you” wants to stay because it’s the easy thing to do. Yet in the period of awakening, the spirit in you wants and desires the “new self” more. If that’s not God hitting you with a 2×4 on the back of your head then I don’t know what it is. For me, that’s the absolute only explanation. So you begin to fight the internal struggle of accepting this new person God is creating you to be while also fighting the outside forces from everyone that knows who you’ve always been. I mean seriously, after 40 years of being “ME” why should I ever expect anyone to think I can be a better me.
People (especially my husband) tell me, “People don’t really change. That’s who they are at their core.” But in my darkest hours, I have always fallen back to being a woman of faith and I can tell you that when you give it to God, he can do amazing things. Now let me tell you…I fail daily at this and it’s not easy. I need the constant renewal of God’s spirit to work within me. If he’s not holding my hand every single day and telling me exactly what to do, I fail. I’ve accepted that. He says “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart.” -Ezekiel 36:26
You know what sucks though – change like that is perceived as IMPOSSIBLE to the outside world! It’s no wonder that there is such sin in this world.
But it’s happening RIGHT NOW. It’s happening in me and I bet it’s happening or will happen in you! Part of the process of this growth is understanding how to have that tender and responsive heart to those who don’t believe and who question.
My prayer for you is this…for you to understand and have compassion for other hearts and to be able to express your changed heart with truth and honesty. This is where you begin to repair that dilapidated heart and build it upon a new foundation.
1. Stop carrying the anger about others and yourself. Anger feeds misery. Stop living with that weight on your shoulders. For whatever reason you have carried it, now it’s time to let it go.
2. Stop inflicting pain on yourself. The pain of jealousy, bitterness, loneliness, hatred, and so many more! Pain is damaging to your heart and soul.
3, Stop carrying a cloud of sorrow everywhere you go and inflicting it upon others. Your sorrow isn’t their sorrow to heal. It’s yours to work through and heal from.
A word of caution – you’re going to fall many times. But there’s good news! Jesus loves the sinner and calls him friend. He raises them up and cleanses them. He will be your courage and strength through your awakening – because it is through him that you show true love!!
And so goes a new heart – make this a realization of who you are, who you have been, and who you are becoming. Each one has a purpose in your life. Embrace it and become the next best you!