Don’t be afraid to hurt me

I don’t want to see you get hurt”, a statement I’ve heard more than once recently. In these conversations, the sentiment is often followed with “Guard your heart”.

Since I tend to take the Bible pretty seriously, and the words “Guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life” are written there, I think this is wise advice. However, I think that I’ve spent so much time guarding this precious heart of mine that the idea of opening it up to anybody is terrifying and nearly impossible. Allowing people in feels like trying to take down steel walls with a plastic hammer.

We are so afraid of hurting what’s behind those steel walls, that we use the softest tools possible to break them down. This method will always prove futile.

When taking more drastic measures, the risk of hurting what’s behind those walls becomes much greater. However, with the right care and support, that hurt can become less, and can heal quickly.

Let’s stop trying to avoid hurting each other (me) and allow truth to break down the barriers that keep us from really living. Truth that is given in love, with space to heal and recover from any wounds. Then, let’s put up fences with gates that are yes, guarded, but that we have the power to let healthy people in and toxic people out.

I would much rather be free to live life fully with some pain, than be locked inside a prison that I’ve put my heart in for fear of being hurt.


-note minor references to Plato’s allegory of the cave, Boundaries by Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend, and Steel bars by Jill Phillips.

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  1. Always enjoy your pithy insights, Kayla! This reminded me of an excellent talk I just listened to (the second one here:… which powerfully talked about the foolishness of living life in such a way as to arrive at death 'safely, avoiding danger and risk; the physical equivalent to your message of emotional risk-taking.

  2. i have to agree with you kyla. if you don't take any risks, you don't experience life to the fullest: growing & learning & changing. how can we be molded to be more like christ without challenges/struggles/trials that shape our character? of course that is not something you just know but something we learn as we walk with christ & study god's word.

    • kylajoyful

      Yes, Holly. Love what you say here. Also, the suffering allows us to relate to the rest of the human population. People are more willing to open up and share their hurts/sorrows when they know they are not alone in those trials.

  3. Hannah

    perfect love casts out fear.

  4. Shelly Miller

    I realise I'm a few days behind here, but this reminds me of that oh so deep movie, Finding Nemo (You can tell I'm a mother if I get my philosophy from Disney cartoons). There is a part where Marlin, Nemo's dad, is ranting on and on to Doree, the fish with no short term memory, saying how he swore he would protect Nemo, he would take care of him and he'd never let anything happen to him. Doree looks and Marlin and says, "You can't never let anything happen to him. Then nothing would ever happen to him." We can't protect and wish for nothing to happen because then nothing would ever happen to us–good and bad. Make sense? 🙂

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