Thursday, June 23, 2011

Heart to Heart

Letting people see the soft and vulnerable places of our hearts can be one of the hardest and most scary things to do. It's kind of funny though, because letting people see that you are human allows them to be close to you. As someone shares their thoughts, fears, joys, hopes, dreams, failures, triumphs, and heartaches, you can't help but love them even more. We are so afraid of letting people in. We need to let people in.

How do you let something go when all you want to do is hold it tighter? It's the weirdest thing to sit next to someone you love and be ok with letting them go if you have to. It's not my favorite feeling mind you, but in a painful sort of way it's kind of comforting. I guess it's not painful, more heartache-y, in a happy melancholy way. Man that's a hard emotion to describe. Sitting on the sidewalk watching Scorpio dance across the sky, I realized I loved you.

I hope I have what it takes to follow my own advice. We sometimes long for things to come back, for doors to open again and let us in. When a door closes we want nothing more than for that door to be opened to us again, we would do things differently, we would be better, we would do whatever it took for that door to open just one more time. This breaks my heart because I have felt this many times before. Many, many times. But if we stand there, holding that closed door, willing it to open, staring at its surface, wishing we could get inside, or even just see inside again, we will miss every other door God opens for us. There may even be a better door just a few steps away, wide open. Until we let go and walk away from the closed door, we can never be content without it. We will always be stuck, we won't progress, we will become fearful and uncertain about many other things, and disappointment, guilt, and endless "if only"s will weigh down our souls. Who knows, that door might open again. But if it does and all we did was stare at it the whole time and make plans for how we would change and do things right, will we really, truly be ourselves, or will we constantly be striving to be what we think they want us to be? What kind of life is that?

It can be so hard to let go. But then my thoughts turn to the most famous line of John Greenleaf Whittier's poem Maud Muller: "For all sad words of tongue and pen, The saddest are these: 'It might have been!'" I think we usually use this line to describe how we feel about the doors that are closed to us, but I feel like this describes even more poignantly the doors that stand so long open, but then close when we choose not to see them. It makes me wonder, "what am I not seeing that God would that I should have?"

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