Have you ever done something you didn't want to, and then regretted it?
I regret being a woman who desperately wanted men to like her. I regret not standing up for who I was. I regret not standing firm when people tried to tell me what to do.
Because I think all this produced a thick heart. Skin that is like cow hide.
And now I tend to not trust people easily, believe what they say, accept things without considering the strings attached or believe people will like me - for me.
I consider ulterior motives. I consider God's ulterior motives.
As if he says to me:
If you aren't good, I won't be good to you.
If I don't think you are serving me well enough, I'll be distant from you.
If you don't spend time with me, I am angry at you.
If you don't give enough to me, I am over you.
If you don't have something to offer the world, I'll pass you over.
I am being frank with you today.
I am also convicted that hearts covered with protective skin are not God's best working ground. He loves a supple heart that lays in his hands. One that, when he presses on it with just the slightest amount of loving pressure, responds.
So, I've forgiven those who never asked for forgiveness. I've asked God asked to soften my heart. And I've requested to hear his voice. God speaks to us today, something like this:
I won't hurt you.
I don't need anything back from you to love you.
I'll love you as a good, pure and holy Father, forever.
I know where I am taking you. It is not to a place of harm or ridicule.
I don't have plans to help and then hurt you.
It's not what you do for me. It is what Jesus did for you.
If you take off what covers your heart, I'll reach in and heal it.
I'll grow you because I love you.
I care for hearts, including yours, with care.
You can trust me.
His perfect love casts out my fear.