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We often do things backwards. In other words, when we are abused, harshly treated, pushed by force beyond our personal convictions, or even fall off our own principles, we tend to harden our hearts with walls that keep the harm fully present. Then we constantly push encouragement, kindness, and love outside those walls and not let them in. We do not grant forgiveness entry and claim protection from further harm by using the abuse (whether from self or others) as our shield. We hold it up high to deflect anything that might penetrate its armored stance. The abuse stands as a proud monument and it’s label is shame.

When In fact, what we must do is force the harm and abuse out, and let the forgiveness and love in to heal us, ridding us of shame and to protect us from further injury. Forgiveness embraces us. When we shield it from coming in or forbid it from going out, we remain not only broken but tied (or should I say ‘bound’) to the eras or events of corruption inside.

Think of your heart as having fences and gates (boundaries). Walls can be broken down from either side, but then you have rubble that is often harmful in itself. (But if you must first tear down the walls to build fences, go at it!!! With a sledgehammer!) With the fences and gates, we constantly protect ourselves by letting the harm go out and not return to haunt us and let the encouragement, the kindness and love flow in. We are the keepers of that gate! There will be triggers and there will be harmful words and actions at that gate but WE determine which ones remain and which ones need to keep on walking past.

“Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.”

Proverbs 4:23 NIV