Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Shutting out pain

I remember when I was in high school, one of my friends was deeply hurt when her boyfriend dropped her like a hot potato. She swore she would never again let another person into her life in that way. No more love for her.

Although I lost touch with her through the years, I remember hearing that she did eventually marry. I hope it was a loving and fulfilling relationship. It had always made me sad to think she might close herself off from any future relationship because of one hurtful and negative experience. That didn't seem like the way to live, at least not from my perspective.

Then again, don't we all try to do something similar at times? We hope that we can fence up our lives against pain and hurt. However, there are no guarantees, are there? And when we try to shut out the hurt and pain, we also shut out much of the pleasure and delight. I've never heard of a way to let only pleasure into our life and barricade out the pain. And anyway, how would we know pleasure if we'd never known any hurt or pain? For don't we know what a valley is because of the mountains that surround it? Don't we know delight in its contrast to unhappiness or hurt?

What are you trying to shut out of your life right now? Might you find a way to open yourself up to all of life, knowing that much growth and transformation actually comes through the hurt, pain and disappointments?

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