We live in a constant tension of wanting to be known and connected to everyone and everything. This is such a beautiful thing but it can also open us up to some hardship, if we aren’t careful. I have recently been sharing about our heart and the way to make sure that in a pressured society we don’t just let anyone and everyone into that sacred place. You can call me “old-school” but I believe that not everyone should be allowed into your heart as quick as facebook friend request or an Instagram follower. I have been using the illustration that of a hotel versus a home. We are to treat hearts like homes. I know that may sound odd especially if you live in a wild one! Stay with me! Your heart should be treated like a well taken care investment. Let me start by explaining how your heart is not a hotel. Hotel living, although nice in many ways, is a def temporal place to lay your head. We are so quick to allow people into our lives that don’t invest in our lives the way you don’t invest into a hotel room. Yah, sure you may pay to sleep there but you aren’t investing time in this room. We so easily give the keys to our heart away as if we are okay that people can just come and go as they please. If we were to value our heart in a healthier way we wouldn’t just let anyone into those sacred places. The same way you probably don’t allow just anyone a key to your home. Your heart isn’t a hotel that people can just come in and take advantage of. I know for much of my life, I didn’t value myself enough to figure out who was safe and healthy for my heart and who just liked benefiting from my life. I didn’t realize that those who really love you will be intentional and pursue you in relationship and you don’t just have to hand you key over to anyone who walks by! As I have gotten older and healthier in my identity in Christ, I have realized that not everyone should have a seat at the table of my heart and a key to my house. Those who get that have shown themselves as safe an they love me unconditionally and are just in and out as the wind blows but they have invested time, tears, laughs, vulnerability and love into me. And to top it off, you think running a home is crazy? I can’t even begin to tell you how much more crazy it all becomes when you continue to treat your heart like a hotel. So learn from me please, stop just allowing whoever into your heart. You are more valuable than that. You are worth having safe and healthy people in your life that love like Christ does! I know that people can come and go and some friends are seasonal, but still every heart should be treated with investment and love. The same way that you should treat other people’s hearts like a home. Value people by speaking life and love. Don’t just being in relationships with them for your benefit, no one likes those people. I dare you to evaluate the way you are letting people in your heart and as you start to value yourself you will see deep relationships blossom and become all the God intended them to be! I also challenge you to treat others hearts with love and value. My mom used to tell me all the time “shay when you go to someone’s house you better leave it cleaner than when you got there”. This should be said of us as love people where they are!
How does one transition from the hotel life to a home life? I think that is the golden question of our lives and it will be a continued walk for us all. I wish I could offer you a formula that would work every time and for every relationship. A quick $19.99 pill to heal your heart and freedom from all the lies that have so easily attached to it. I think the cliche and yet so truthful answer to transitioning from treating your heart like a hotel to a home, starts in your mind. We must recognize the lies that have traveled with us in our life. They come from a range of places. It can be thoughts you have about yourself or things that have been spoken over you by others. We hear about this so much and yet as many times as we hear it on repeat we seem to still need the refresher continually that renewing our mind is not a joke. We don’t get a day of vacation in this area. You won’t arrive at a place that you will no longer need to renew your mind. There is a saying,” “there are 2 battles. one to get free and one to stay free.”, this means we will get freedom but we will also always need to gain more freedom as we walk and tend to the ground that has been set free continually. So one of the many things you can start doing is seeing the lies you believe about yourself and start conquering them with healing and truth. This can be walked out in different ways. For me personally, I usually will see a theme of feelings and insecurities hitting me from all over and I will start to ask myself what is causing me to think and feel the way I am. When I get the core lie I will ask God where the lie started and that usually leads me into forgiveness to myself or others. I just ask the Lord to break the lie and give me His truth to replace the lie. I don’t want you to think that this happens rarely, I honestly live a continual walk of conquering lies that have seemed to travel with me thus far in my life. Another great thing to transition your heart is to use discernment over mercy. We, especially as women, tend to have a huge mercy heart towards others. This can get the best of us when it comes to just allowing people into our hearts instead of actually letting people show us they are safe. We can tend to be suckers for love and people. Looking at my back on my story there are times that if I was valuing myself in a healthier way I wouldn’t have had to walk out some very dysfunctional relationships. I allowed my mercy for people to outweigh what I saw in people. I would have thoughts like “ If I don’t love them who will? Christ calls me to love everyone so here is another moment to chose the narrow road” All wrapped in religion and good intentions and mercy, I would allow people into my heart with an all-access pass when God never told me to let them in this close. I just didn’t have a grid that love can still be love from a distance. Love doesn’t mean they have an instant VIP pass to your heart.
I love love and I am all about loving people, but I would say don’t let your mercy heart get the best of you. Value yourself enough to allow relationships to grow in a healthy way. I promise you that you aren’t the only one who can love any one person in your life. There is a whole family of believers that God wants to use to love people! So don’t pressure yourself and don’t allow your mercy to silence your discernment. There will be people you can only love from a distance and there will be those that have earned their way to your heart and you give a key to your house! It should be an honor to have access to your heart, not something that everyone gets the quick benefit of! These are some major ways to help you transition. I would sit back and ask yourself some questions after you read this. Who are those people who have access to my heart? Are they safe, solid, loving people? Do they love me where I am and yet want to see me grow? Can they speak life and truth in love? Are there people who have access that shouldn’t? Do I allow people into my heart too quickly? Are there lies I am believing about myself that don’t add up to my value in Christ? What is the truth that God speaks about me? I want to remind you that although Jesus had 12 disciples, they all played different roles in Jesus’s walk on the Earth. You can have a few Johns in your life, the ride or die people who have full access to your heart to call you out and up into who you’re made to be and hold your hand when you need it and love you in the midst of the ugliest seasons of life. You will have those that are close but can’t just come and go as they please. You will also run into some of those that you can love but you will need to know they aren’t who you think they are. They may be the Judas. You can love Judas with the same heart you love John but it will look different and that is completely fine. Love is not measured by the closeness of a person but rather in the quickness of unconditional that is given regardless of actions. Jesus loved Judas as much as He loved John. the love played out differently and allowed for different boundaries but it was the same love! We all want Johns in our lives and I think to have them is essential. You will also need to know how to love those who are on the outer banks of your heart. I don’t want to say that everyone else is a Judas by any means, but rather just share that not everyone is a John. There are plenty of other kinds of relationships you can use to explain, but for the sake of using a dramatic one, I used this one. I have so many people in my life, not all the are Johns. You will have the Peter, James, Thomas, and they all play a huge role in your walk!
It will take a team to accomplish what is inside of you, the dreams, the vision, the crazy faith-required-walk you have been called to! Everyone is essential, but not every relationship is required to look like John’s with Jesus! I have a hand full of John like relationships. I have many that aren’t Judas either! The point is that you can love many people with the same love but it can look different! Please do not use this blog as a reason to think that everyone in your life is a Judas just because you’re working through hard stuff! If you are working through hard stuff, I bet they aren’t a Judas, as He never worked through anything outwardly. The point isn’t to judge your friends, the point is that you love the same because you know your own value and you can from that place love in wholeness knowing how and when to open your heart and to the measure to open it to those around you! It won’t be an easy road to transition from something you have done for a long time, but it will be worth it! You are worth it and you will see it as you gain momentum in treating your heart like a home and not a hotel!!! You are deeply loved!