In Chapter 2 (“The School of Hard Rocks: Reshaping a Hardened Heart”) of How to Forgive, June Hunt speaks of reshaping a hardened heart- hers. Ms. Hunt describes her father as hard as flint with a hair-trigger temper. Although her father was recognized as a visionary business leader, at home the family walked on eggshells due to his oppression.
June, her mother, and three siblings were her father’s covert family. Unbeknownst to June’s mother when she became romantically involved with June’s father, he was a married man with six children. His perpetual pummeling included verbal and mental abuse. At the age of fifteen, June researched and then proposed murdering her father to her mother. Thankfully, mother’s cooler head prevailed.
When June became a Christian, she was surprised that “Christ inside me started changing me from the inside out.” Yet even though she knew the biblical command to love one another as well as our enemies, she truly believed her situation was a legitimate exception and that God understood. June only had one problem: God’s holy standard is to hate no one- and June wasn’t an exception. The standard applies to all.
June explains reshaping a hardened heart:
“Unforgiveness can make you heart hard and dark like flint, and over time, you can amass enough bitterness to build an impenetrable wall around your soul. But when you surrender your hardened heart to the Master Stonecutter, He reshapes your heart to look like His– sensitive to the needs of others . . . . By releasing the flint into His hands- the flint of unforgiveness- He will reshape your hardened heart and make it like his.”
Today’s question: What Scriptures have guided and strengthened you to give you a forgiving heart? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “Confusion about forgiveness”