Why do I often suppress the warm sentiments in my heart? Maybe I fear that I will be thought of as silly, or maybe the impression is far from mutual. It’s easier and safer to stay inside my shell.
During my “best” week of the monthly hormonal cycle, I am more likely to shower people with appreciation and affection. Sometimes I later feel ridiculous, ignored or rejected. I started practicing holding back and letting the feelings wane.
A few months ago, a new friend entered my life – or at least I thought of her as such. During my best week, I drafted an email expressing my appreciation for God bringing her into my life and the encouragement she offered as we raised teenage daughters. However, I decided to sit on the draft for a couple days to see if I thought it was silly a couple days later. Sure enough, my heart chilled and I did not want to take the risk of exposing myself.
What did I miss? The following month, I sent a much milder form of appreciation along with a matter of business. She sent me a gushing response that left me feeling incredibly blessed.
This morning, I took an impulsive, tentative, yet tiny leap to express a thought on my heart to a fellow co-worker and my prayers for his family. As a result, I learned how God is dramatically working in his and his wife’s life. A rush of memories of a time in my life when God called me to radical change flooded my soul (the 4th echo this week – a subject for a separate posting!). Hearing the passion to follow hard after Jesus re-ignited the fire in my heart, too.
By protecting myself inside the cocoon, what have I been missing? Pain? Blessing? Both? Is the risk worth it?
Michal chastised David for his indignity, and his response was “…I will celebrate before the Lord. I will become even more undignified than this, and I will be humiliated in my own eyes.” (2 Samuel 6:21-22). He exposed the affection of His heart in worship to God, and was ridiculed by his wife in return. Yet, to him, it was worth the price. And God was delighted.
How often have I chosen sensibility and dignity over expressing my heart? Is protecting my ego from rejection or humiliation worth the cost of missing out on being used by God and allowing His goodness to be displayed?
How much pain am I willing to risk? Fear is one of my worst enemies.
Oh, how I want to become even more undignified than this!