[Guest Post by Sundi Jo] – The heart is something we obviously can’t live without. When it stops beating, so do we.
But how often do we really live, even though our heart is pumping life into us?
There was a time in my life that yes, I was breathing. My heart was beating. Blood was running through my veins. But there was no life in me.
I was simply surviving.
I used food to build walls around my heart. For each wall that was built, the harder my heart became.
I was a 330 lb., little girl living inside the body of a 25-year old woman.
I hated my very existence.
I believed the lies that I wasn’t good enough.
I was unlovable.
If my father had abandoned me, everyone else would too.
I had to protect my heart at all costs, and that meant refusing to let others get close to me; really get to know me.
I had a heart to serve others. My heart would ache when I saw others hurt.
My heart could give, but I wouldn’t allow it to receive.
Being vulnerable was too risky.
I couldn’t take another chance of trusting someone else, especially with the secrets that surrounded my aching heart.
Slowly, however, God used people to be His crowbars and pry open the doors covering my heart.
I would let a secret out, and the lies of shame were replaced with love and grace. For each moment I allowed my heart to be vulnerable, a ray of light would shine through the cracks.
I could feel the change.
I could feel the burdens getting lighter.
My heart wasn’t just beating–it was boldly pounding with life.
I was finding freedom.
I wasn’t surviving anymore.
I was living.
As I shoveled out the lies from the pit of darkness, and replaced them with truth, not only did my heart change, but also so did the rest of me. My view of myself changed.
I believed I was worthy.
I believed I deserved to be healthy.
Four years later, I write this to you 145 lbs. lighter. I share this with you from a heart that may be scarred; yet it’s full of life.
There are days my heart still hurts.
There are moments it breaks.
That will never go away.
We live in a fallen world and pain is unavoidable. But the risk of being vulnerable and sharing my heart with others trumps building up those walls and allowing my heart to remain hard.
Proverbs 4:23 says, Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.
Guard your heart, yes, but don’t forget to let life flow from it.
Choose to live.
Sundi Jo is a writer, speaker, and small business owner, making her home in Branson, Missouri. She is the author of Liar Liar, a manifesto that will challenge you, change your heart, and lead you in the right direction to believe the truth about your true identity. You’ll find her engulfed in the social media world, spending time with friends and family, hanging out in a pair of jeans and flip-flops, or writing. Find Sundi Jo on Facebook or Twitter (@sundijo).