Some days the words fly in and out of our mouths and we miss the mark they make on one another. It is effortless, the wounding that inflicts beneath the surface because of hard words. Sly and unyielding in its power over us, we rarely understand the effect words leave in our memory banks. It’s something we don’t spend a lot of time talking about in some of our happy Christian circles.
The truth behind the looks, the judgments, the comparison game, the hurtful words and the selfish intentions may seem innocent to some, but the rest of the world is looking on and they are calling it for what it is.
Unlovely is what first comes to mind, and lacking grace is the second. It bothers me, friends, because I wonder just how many times I have been a stumbling block to another because I have allowed rejection or hard words to color the lens of love I see people through.
What kind of garment are you wearing on your heart friends?
Does it look like grace?
Does it embody the power of love in all its colors?
I have been wrestling with these thoughts, in my quiet time before the throne. Pondering what I am sure He is asking me to lay down at the altar. I have struggled to give it to him because it means I can’t hold on to it, anymore. Honestly, I wasn’t aware how deeply this thorn was nestled in my side. I didn’t realize that I had kept a wound close, guarding it…even tending it. It was making it hard for me to be able to take the risks that relationship requires.
Rejection goes deep into our souls, friends. We don’t realize how easily we administer its deadly missive, but we do it. We do it and rarely consider the effects.
Sometimes when we are rejected, or we think we are, the wound is like a bruise that goes deep. Eventually, a callus forms and we ‘forget’ about it, till we are bumped … right there in the soft spot (the one which never fully healed).
When we tend the wounds inflicted by the words and actions of others, we limit healing. Housing hurt in our heart keeps us from loving and living freely. Rather than putting on a garment of grace, we shield ourselves with indifference and that only makes the pain worse.
I don’t know if you are holding hurts in the cardiac recess inside, but I do know that the poison we hold on to is like a cancer that grows quickly the more we feed it with the damaging lies that bring death. These untruths often come in words we were never meant to hear and actions we should have never seen. They always rob grace and steal joy. They are not of God.
The thief (the father of all lies) comes to steal, kill and destroy; I have come that you may have life in abundance. (John 10:10)
The tumor inside can’t be destroyed easily, but rather necessitates a cutting of flesh, a ripping of soul pieces, and extreme exposure to the radiation of the Son. We have to spend as much time as possible abiding in Him in order to allow the arrows to bounce off and fall to the ground.
We need to be reminded that our words and our actions bear a weight that can wound if we wield them like a sword carelessly.
The truth is: We need heart surgery to be those who walk the walk and talk the talk. Although our souls are made new when we accept the gift of salvation, our hearts need constant dipping into the wellspring of grace’s pool of mercy.
We need to bleed anemic this living that pretends to carry the crosses we wear and get filled with the vitamin rich love that was emptied through the trial of passion Christ endured for us.
He sweat blood in a garden, received a kiss of death, stood amidst accusing lies and hard untrue words without a word of defense. He bore the mark of humility when betrayed, endured abuse and ridicule, and still he bore compassion…still He extended love and hope. Even while being crucified, He choose grace words, life words, hope words.
That is what always makes it real to me. He knows what we feel. He understands the pain in our hearts. He was tempted just as we are and still chose to wear grace.(Hebrews 4:15)
- We need to let the power of those Words pierce through to the marrow of our bones, divide our spirit from our soul, and create a new heart within so that those things that seems to snag our souls do not leave a scar.
The Word of God is alive and powerful, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the dividing asunder of joints and marrow, soul and spirit. – Hebrews 4:12
- Choose to make the Word of God your delight and you will find ample blessing to secure and insure the steadfast beating of your heart, feeling the healing balm of His promises restore you from inside out.
His delight is in the law of the Lord and on it he meditates day and night. -Psalm 1:2
- When we are full of God’s Word, the ability to pray for those who are hurtful becomes easier, while the need to extend grace becomes clear.
I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. – Psalm 119:11
When we choose grace we plant loveliness.
It is unmistakable the depth these holes, the ones covered by thick skinned callus covers, have the potential to become. Caverns of emptiness made hollow by the constant visits we make to review the hurt rather than laying it all before the Lord in prayer erode joy. When we closet ourselves away from the sting, we only propagate the seed of unloveliness, and like all seeds, it is going to bloom and flower.
I am challenged friends… He is pulling me into territory that beckons surrender because with surrender comes power to walk in grace.
Grace meets us all in the guise of love connecting heartbeats of hope together, right where we are with no agenda…no prerequisites…no limitations; it prepares us for blessing.
Here is one of the secrets I am tucking into that heart space where that tumor was once growing strong, perhaps it will be a dose of medicine for you, too.
Blessing others in spite of our feelings or the return, recognition , and redemption we receive allows us to bless big and risk large, always knowing the result is completely in the hands of the Father.
Once we start to get it, to really see the power of wearing a garment of grace, we see exactly what gospel living demands. We see the healing power that blessing brings to broken hearts and memories that are clouded by tears. We learn to love in spite of the hard words and the ugly that has too often been a part of our humanity. We recognize that the lens of love exposes us to a palette of beauty only sight by grace can give us.
>>Here is the place that I’d like to ask some hard questions of you, if you are willing. I’d love to ask you to be real and share honestly with me. If you’re ready to shed the layers that limit authenticity, in exchange for a little more real in your journey, then you are at the right place.
This very first challenge we need to take together in this journey towards grace filled living, is to break through the false bravado we wear for protection.
- Step one in the challenge: Delete the words of condemnation that have been spoken over you, be willing to take a risk in relationship this week.
>>>The question to ponder: What has been the one thing that makes it hard for you to take the risk to get close to others?
I’d love to hear your answers to this question. Please share them in the comment section, below or here at The Table of Grace Community on FB.
I am praying for His healing touch to sew up the scars in your heart and start the process of renewal within because although love is risky, it prepares us to make a place for grace in our lives and extend His blessings to others.
Linking up with friends for the journey:
Each post I share in this series on A Warrior Heart : Wearing a Garment of Grace will end with a question to answer and share in the comment section, and sometimes I will include a conversation that I have had with a friend.
If you’d like to join me in the conversation, send me a note at dawnboyer@journeysingrace. The week that I share our conversation, I will also share your blog/website and link you in to the post.
I want to visit these places our hearts hang onto once in a while, here on this journey towards grace. I want to talk about the friendships we wear and the power that grace brings to them. Consider this an invitation to join the conversation, if you’d like to. Will you join me?
We are going to talk about it over at the Table of Grace Community, too; a place where grace resides and chairs are situated around a virtual table with the Word as our food and His Spirit as our source of refreshment.