Even the strongest characters, occasionally have their hearts wounded by words that come at them like flaming arrows. How is it that some seem to deflect these flaming arrows, on a regular basis, virtually unscathed while others seem to be shaped by them?
A popular theory is that if parents, teachers and friends are affirming and positive that a child, when grown, will be a strong, healthy individual with great self-esteem. In a way, I wish that were true, but it only takes a minute to think of people I know personally who have overcome a terrible childhood and because of it, are now armed with a shield that protects their heart. And then there are others, like me, who came to depend on those affirming words heard as a child in order to feel good about themselves and be strong in this world but ….when the apron strings were cut, I wasn’t so strong. Certainly every child deserves to have adoring parents and granted, it does affect a child positively, but there are no guarantees as to how a a person will survive once in the real world.
I guess it’s best that way. It keeps us all in the same boat with equal opportunity to grow into the strength intended for each of us. So how do we do that? The strength of the Spirit within each of us is the same, yet some of us hold onto this weakness with a mighty grip quenching what the Spirit in us longs to give. Why not let go of that grip and be free?
Just imagine wearing a shield that could deflect flaming arrows. Now imagine those arrows as carrying words that have hurt you – and still do hurt you. Wouldn’t it be cool to have protection from them? What if the only words that could penetrate the shield were words of truth? Truth, truth and nothing but the truth.
Yeah, I admit sometimes the truth hurts too – but those are the words I want to embrace, even if they hurt. Maybe I need to do something with them – like ask for forgiveness – or take action so they are not true any longer or just learn how think about them productively. Where the truth gives life – embracing lies can be deadly. Hurtful words are most often lies and lies, when believed, can be deadly. It’s truth that makes us light in the world. It’s truth that sets us free. Understanding the power I have to control which words I allow to affect me has been intriguing, freeing and empowering, both in the spiritual sense and in the physical sense. Oh, it’s good to be free from the power of unkind words!