“Keep and guard your heart with all vigilance and above all that you guard, for out of it flow the springs of life.”
I recall being newly married, and constantly getting this Scripture. Imagine that. I could not for the life of me interpret completely what this was to mean to me. Though I studied it for years, yet it would be many years before I could fully comprehend the sobriety of that Scripture and how it could have saved me from many ills.
I have always been really big on “God is love.” And since God was love, and if “you do all these marvelous things but yet you do not possess love, you are nothing but a loud noisy gong.” Therefore, I made it my ambition to not merely possess love, but become love. What better way to to become like my Father and to be Christ like.
I felt this was the most necessary quest any human could embark on. And this quest started when I was a young child. I would devour any literature I found on Psychology and Science. One day while doing so, I read how important hugs were to the well being of us as individuals. Since I didn’t experience hugs or loving words, I made an inner vow that I was going to be a hugger and always tell everyone I met something lovely about themselves too.
I grew up greatly influenced by Cinderella and how life was supposed to be. I could not wait to marry my handsome prince. Only to marry someone though they were a fairly new Christian but they were not the affectionate type. Nor were they a hugging or kissing kind of person. Nor were they a talking kind of person, one who shared feelings, thoughts, dreams and hopes. And they were not a listening type of person either. Similar to how I grew up with emotional abandonment, unfortunately history was repeating itself for me.
Many years later I would come to realize that I was merely an accessory to fit their persona. I was a commodity. A thing. A possession. A piece of property. I was an extension to their formulated identity. And over time I would lose my opinions, my dreams, any contradicting ideology, and become a Step Ford Wife.
We had the perfect pseudomutuality, a relationship that had a superficial appearance of mutual openness and understanding although in fact the relationship was rigid, shallow and hollow and depersonalizing. Later this was utterly devastating when faced with the reality that I had been living and participating in someone’s falsehood. In the process, my identity and personality DNA was stolen. And in reality for them, I did not exist and in attempting to, would result in more grooming and stripping of my individualism. In any attempt to “exist” would be met with punishment to reinforce, I was to be nothing. And this fit perfectly with the Scriptures that I researched regularly along the lines of being, “A living sacrifice”, and “Dying to oneself”. You don’t have to annihilate someone who willingly lies down and simply and slowly just disappears.
So we ha When we share with a person who really doesn’t authentically care about us, we are throwing precious pearls before swine when we share pieces of ourselves in transparency and truth.
They can exploit you much like what King David experienced, “They pretend they care, but they are only gathering information to gossip, slander and lie about me.” With a toxic person, everything you share not only can be used against you, but very well will be used against you.
It could be the simplest thing as when you tell them, “I love when I get beautiful cards from you. They say so much and since you are not really a word person, they mean even more to me.” And then the next occasion, you now get no card, or you receive a general type card with no special meaning or beautiful loving words in it. This is pretty minor, compared to even more of the hurtful things they can contrive. You never tell a toxic person what you like and what you don’t like. Lest you give your pearls to someone who will stomp on them and then turn around and attack you for them.
We are to guard our hearts with great caution. “For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks”. So, I was always extremely diligent over my love life spiritually and the condition of my heart’s health. Very vigilant, that I never permitted a root of bitterness to grow within my soul. But in hindsight, I see so many truths that I never heard nor contemplated from this Scripture and in the past it cost me dearly.
I see more relatedly, how guarding your heart assists you in knowing who actually are the swine that you should be cautious and slow to share the pieces of your soul with. And to always be mindful, that people can change and not always for the best.
Too often, had we proceeded with more caution into our friendships, relationships, or partnerships, it would not have been necessary to guard against bitterness and unforgiveness. Neither to heal from unnecessary narcissistic trauma or recover lost pieces of ourselves.
“A wise person is cautious in relationships.” So, when someone demands that you should trust them, that’s an indication of a person you should definitely proceed with great caution into a relationship with, if even at all. For trust is earned and never an entitlement.
The amount of caution that we drive our relationships with, will ultimately end up determining the quality of life that will spring forth and that we experience on this side of heaven.
“Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.” Toxic individuals are not only foolish but they seek to fool you as well. So be very careful who you let into your inner circle.