God sure has his ways of gently reminding me and teaching me what is truly important in this world.
For about a week, my eyes have been really bothering me. Itching, burning, feeling like something is in them…just plain painful and uncomfortable. I started to use artificial tears which help a little, and I am making an eye doctor appointment to have my eyes checked out.
Whenever I have symptoms of any kind, I can’t help myself…I start to look for things that may have caused the issue. It could be a different cleaning product, cosmetic or personal care item, food, medicine, or drink. My mind started to think of things I’ve changed about a week ago.
When I remembered what changed a week ago, my heart tugged at me. I knew exactly what it was, and I didn’t want to face the possibility that I would need to live without this thing in my life.
There are many things that I have hung onto in my heart, which bring me comfort and help me to feel grounded. Sentimental things that I have trouble letting go. For some reason, having these things in my possession or in my home, give me a feeling of connection with my past. My childhood and growing up years. Just while writing this, I realize that this thing has been a constant in my life…it was there from when I was a small child, remained in my parents’ home while growing up and moving out. Then these things were given to my sister and brother in law, and were displayed beautifully in their home.
About a month or so ago, this beautiful set of Great Books that my dad had treasured, was passed on to me. They sat in my garage, until I brought them into my home about a week ago. Thinking back now, I remember how my eyes stung as I dusted them off – I ignored it. When I finally had the entire set in my living room, I actually felt my dad’s presence. Thinking about them now brings tears to my eyes.
I was so excited that I now had possession of these books…this treasure of times past. All I could think about was choosing the perfect bookcase that would honor them in our home.
As soon as I figured out that the books and the dust mites attached to them (the books are over 50 years old) were probably the culprits, I knew the books had to go. Without hesitation, I packed them away in boxes and took them downstairs to be dealt with later.
It’s now a day later and my eyes already feel better.
So, you may ask what I have learned from all this.
I have learned that sometimes we hang on to the past as an excuse not to move forward. We hang on to what was or the self-created illusion of what was. Without realizing it, we give so much power to certain events in life, that we box ourselves in…we imprison ourselves. As we cling to what we feel we cannot live without, those strongholds are hurting us in ways we do not understand.
As I carried those cherished books downstairs, and realized that I probably will need to part with them, I felt sad and a little panicked. Then a new feeling started to well up in my heart, and I never felt this feeling before.
It was a feeling of freedom. Freedom from the past, and also the freedom to move on. The freedom to become the person the Lord has created me to be, and to live the life he is blessing me with.
Thank you, Lord, for always touching my heart and teaching me in such loving, gentle ways. Help me to always be open to your guidance and your will. Most of all, please overflow my heart with your love and peace, and help me to share that love with hearts in need of You.
For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Matthew 6:21