The first time I read the book ‘I kissed dating goodbye’ by Joshua Harris, I was young and in love. As I turned one page after the other, I felt my youthful rebellion dismiss each statement in the book. I was convinced that Joshua was a very serious guy and I would have advised him to loosen up a little if I had met him at that time. I mean life is never that serious and after all it’s just dating as we are young and free.
How can a little dating hurt anyone I asked as I tossed the book aside and lay on the chest of my first love. I looked up at him and he gave me that warm familiar smile mouthing “I love you” before continuing to watch the movie that he had been engrossed in. I smiled and lay there calmly as I wondered to myself “how can something as sweet and pure as our love be described as a recipe for failure?” I concluded that Joshua probably had not found a love as mine yet, for it was indeed perfect. The famous Bible scripture in Ecclesiastes “there is nothing new under the sun” was yet to be revealed to me.
At the time I did not really understand what love was but was glad to dive into a relationship for that’s how the world defined being in love. It didn’t look like a big deal and incase one did not work out, there were so many other people. I did not understand that a broken heart was not like a car that you can replace or fix. The deep roots of a broken heart were alien to me and I lived in its lack of understanding.
Years down the line with a terrible break up under my belt, the only words that I can utter with such clarity of thought are “If only I had listened, if only I had guarded my heart”. I look back bitterly at every man who claimed to love me only to touch my young innocent heart to its destruction. How cunningly they deceived my heart and for them I opened the door to the most precious organ in my body. Years down the line what was left was a heart wrapped in black thorns that made my heart forever wet for its constant bleed.
Hearts do indeed get broken and the first or second loves never really stay forever. Look, where are they now? I was naïve to ever think the organ called heart was safe in the hands of one not ready to guard it forever. As an individual I did not understand my own responsibility in guarding my own heart .I realized how recklessly and carelessly I had handled my heart, believing it was never that serious.
Oh it was that serious, for as surely as you play with fire, so will it burn. As the breakup unfolded before me, my heart felt a pain I had never felt before. I could not describe it. I did not understand how I was still breathing when a knife was stuck in my heart. I felt the toll it was having in me, as I saw my once red bright heart slowly turn into a dark heart. In the realization of my actions I could only cry out “I am so sorry for not protecting you, dear heart”.
To be in a relationship and expect your heart to remain guarded would be a task for a fool. No one who has ever loved can really shield their hearts from all that love comes with. We open our hearts and pour out ourselves to our partners for that’s the most precious gift we can give them, our hearts. At that time we are always convinced as little children are in their parents that our hearts are in the safe hands of our beloved.
This am sure many of us have come to learn is not always true. They don’t always guard our precious heart’s with diligence and thus here I am years wiser, joining the likes of Joshua Harris in passing on this important message.
To guard one’ heart from unnecessary hurt and pain means making a deliberate choice to sieve the contents of what your heart can receive and who can deposit into it, in a relationship and life in general. Dating though a pleasant thought at first, seems to be the number one breaker of hearts, a precursor to a potential divorce in the future. Think about it.
Our loving Father cannot help but look on helplessly at us as He sees us parade our precious heart’s as if they were a piece of jewelry. He constantly asks us to give Him our hearts first, as He will guard them jealously until He points out to us the one and only person, He chose and entrusted keep our heart’s safe till death, otherwise everyone else will break it.
How I wish I had listened, even as Solomon the wisest man in the world cautioned me to do so long before I was born in Proverbs 4:23 “Above all else guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life”. I am glad however that my experience will not be wasted and will benefit another yet to make such a decision.