How tenderly you hold your heart, the innocence and love within, all gently wrapped in tissue paper and tied with a blue ribbon. How cold the world can seem when you go out into it, as you try to protect your heart against the winds and the storms. And how tempting it is to steel your heart against them, to try to strengthen your heart by making it colder and harder. Sometimes it feels that you must do this to ease the ache for warmth and sharing, for tenderness spoken and gentleness returned.
But the heart does not grow strong through hardening, and brittleness does not serve. The heart grows strong through openness and flowing, through warmth and caring, even if that caring is given only by you to yourself. The heart is a resilient muscle that will heal itself if only it is allowed to have love flow through it. It does not heal through protection and stagnation, but by opening wide to the flow of human communication and connection.
Open wide, little heart. Trust this truth, that by reaching out in oneness and love, you will grow stronger. Trust this truth that love must flow and that this flow begins by giving, over and over, by opening your heart and allowing yourself to love and then to love more and then even more. Remember always that loving someone is a great gift to yourself, not only to them. And that even love not openly expressed, when allowed to flow, can heal.
And remember, too, to make sure that one of the recipients of all of your love is you. For when you love yourself deeply, truly and warmly, when you speak kindly to yourself and lavish yourself with praise, when you gently nurture every gift that is yours and accept yourself lovingly just as you are, then you have it all. You are the giver and the receiver. You are the open flowing heart.
And within this flow, you and your tender heart will grow stronger and stronger with each passing moment. And someday, you will allow yourself to shine out with all that you are and your heart will smile and gladly accept the love that flows from others in return.
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