Holidays around the corner. The kids are thinking of Christmas and decorating. We usually put our tree up the weekend after Thanksgiving.
"I don't want to put my ballerina ornament up this year," Lanie said. It's a beautiful glass ornament she picked out years ago. "I'm worried (a little friend) will run around and it will get broken."
"It won't get broken," I said. "(That little friend) isn't little anymore and doesn't run around the house. It will be ok."
She's thinking of years past and remembers the running. I'm thinking of her words over something that's special to her getting broken--a concern so great, she doesn't even want to take it out and display it for what it was made to do--this fragile object for beauty and joy.
The life implications aren't lost on me. I think of all the times I wanted to hide my heart because it felt fragile and people can be reckless even when they don't mean to be. Times I wanted to not take it out, not let it be seen, but keep it tucked away.
People can be really reckless with others. That kind of treatment knows no age limits or other boundaries. No one is immune to it in friendships, families, churches or other communities.
I read a book over the summer about friendship, and there was a part in it that read friendship is like putting your heart in someone's hands saying, "Here, I trust you with this."
I've held my heart out before, whether to have it rejected or dropped, made fun of or wounded with words. And there was a season I just wanted to hold it close to myself, not take it out to display it for what it was made--to love others.
But it's different now. The hurt of former friendships won't make me hide it away. It's stronger now, this heart. And while still capable of being wounded, I won't hide it away for a season. I hold it out and I hold it high. I don't hold it out to be abused, but I hold it out to be used by a good God who knows what he's doing.