“If you have gone through hurts in this life and you have kept your heart open, then you are a remarkable person…You have made a choice that few do.”
–Holley Gerth, You’re Made for a God-sized Dream, Chapter 3
“He didn’t mean to kill Patty. He was shooting because he was afraid.” These astonishing words of forgiveness tumbled out of my friend’s mouth as we sat on the carpeted hallway floor outside of the chapel. She had just sat through a meeting on the logistics of heightened security and traffic flow needed for the funeral of her precious husband, killed in the line of duty.
Her voice was soft and calm. Undeniably sad and dazed, but certain. She spoke of the shooter’s family and the pain they must be enduring. In her time of deepest sorrow, my sweet friend kept her heart open.
She spent the subsequent days, weeks, months, even years, in unspeakable grief, a range of emotions I will never fully know; yet, she kept squeezing her babies tight…and each person she encountered. Yes, we know to expect that bear hug when she greets us.
My heart rejoices that her new husband now receives those bear hugs, and her his in return.
She kept her heart open.
There is a certain kind of destructive marriage…the kind that cries out for annulment, and my friend found herself in one. My friend with a bigger heart than just about anyone I know. A spirit so alive and adventurous. Children so precious. She—they—were being crushed. Resource after resource for improvement exhausted, laden with trauma most would not believe existed, she made a brave choice. She kept her heart open.
Knowing neither would heal together, and perhaps him ever, she fought for her kids and began a new, healthy life. She secured avenues of support, a home she made beautiful and safe for her babies, and an income to support them.
And then she completed certification as a yoga instructor.
She kept her heart open.
My brave friends are an example to me. They endured pain that few can understand, and they’ve continued on in ways that bring life to others. Rather than being bitter, they are better, and their light helps those around them to be better too. They kept their hearts open.
I’m focusing on keeping my heart open too. I’m writing from a place of personal upheaval as my family goes through many changes. I’m walking with my children as they learn to manage the stress and pain that comes with relationship changes that are beyond their control. Addresses are different. Income is different. We wonder why God allows what he allows.
And yet. Their spirits are sweet. Their precious personalities are blossoming as they journey with courage through some hard days.
We’re keeping our hearts open.
It’s hard to remember God is loving when the world feels like it’s collapsing. [clickToTweet tweet=”Allowing myself to be consumed by anger and bitterness would be easy. @MandyMianecki #keepyourheartopen” quote=”Allowing myself to be consumed by anger and bitterness would be easy.”] But, that still, small voice inside keeps niggling at me.
To keep my heart open.
Maybe you’ve been there? Maybe you’re there right now. Whatever you’re going through, will you continue to make the brave choice to keep your heart open? [clickToTweet tweet=”God-sized dreamers keep their hearts open. @MandyMianecki” quote=”That is the way of the God-sized dreamer.”]
“You are a light, my friend. Because when your heart is open, it’s Jesus who shines out. And that glow illuminates the path to dreams he’s given you.”
–Holly Gerth, You’re Made for a God-sized Dream, Chapter 3
Shared by: Mandy Mianecki