Building walls

To the editor:

Since people have been building settlements, walls have been used for protection to keep things in or out. There are physical, intellectual, metaphorical, and spiritual walls. People build metaphorical walls around their hearts and minds to protect themselves from hurt, fear, and disappointment. Some of us build high walls because we’ve been hurt before and don’t want to open up to anyone again. Can you imagine if a city never opened its gates to receive goods or provisions? What would happen inside the walls? Life inside the city would stop flowing. Think of that city as our hearts; we would soon feel lifeless. The Bible says in Proverbs 18:19, “An insulted brother is harder to win back than a city with strong walls.” Arguments are like the walls of a closed city, they keep our hearts locked up and not willing to receive love out of fear of being hurt. Many of us have been hurt by parents, spouses, and friends, and we never want to feel that hurt again. When we are always on the offense we end up hurting ourselves and feeling alone even among friends.

Many of us have fallen for the lie that worldly pleasures will help us forget about our pain, only to find that after the quick high our pain is still there and often worse than before. The truth is that we will always be hurt by someone or something and we only have control of what we do with that hurt. We can either harbor unforgiveness and let it will grow into bitterness and hate, or choose forgiveness no matter how hard it is to do so. We might have to choose forgiveness every time we awake up, but we have to forgive so that we can have forgiveness in our hearts, even if the person does not forgive us. Jesus said in Matthew 6:14-15, “Yes, if you forgive others for the wrongs they do to you, then your Father in heaven will also forgive your wrongs. But if you don’t forgive others, then your Father in heaven will not forgive the wrongs you do.” We will always have walls around our hearts if we don’t ask for forgiveness. The key to forgiveness is letting our grudges go. Even if we don’t think we have the strength to let go, God does!

Benjamin Budde

St. Marys