How do we get to a place where our hearts are hard like stone? I think many people use this defense mechanism to keep pain out of their lives. I know I have in the past, and still do to this day. It’s a place where we don’t want to confront anymore since past efforts to try and make the situation better don’t seem to make lasting positive change. We get disappointed with the lack of change, and then begin to build up resentment towards the person(s) and start to harden our hearts. When this happens, I pray for God to change me, and remind myself almost daily of the scripture….look at the log in my own eye and not the speck in someone else’s. But, when the change that needs to come isn’t coming, it’s like being in a tornado that keeps spinning in an endless circle of destruction.
I do recall as a buyer joking with my co-workers, that my skin was like alligator skin. Rough, scaly, and tough to break. I built up a resistance or a hard heart to negative comments, and other people trying to blame or point fingers. Being in the buying world wasn’t an easy job, and we had to balance problems and people complaining on a daily basis. It was easier to point a finger at someone else than to own up and realize that we should’ve been a team working together.
Hardened hearts are also found in Exodus between Moses and Pharaoh. God commanded Moses to set his people free, and Pharaoh refused to release them over and over again. It states in the bible that God hardened Pharaoh’s heart multiple times to not listen to Moses. God sent the storms of change…the swarm of frogs, locusts, and plagues to kill Pharaoh’s son. I never understood this part in the bible about the hardened hearts until recently, and now believe that when God hardens our hearts he wants change to come. The change may cause pain and suffering and the tornados to spin, but it will be for goodness in the end. A reason to hope for something better than what we have been getting, and to be free of the chains that hold us down. It’s called forgiveness…no matter what anyone has done, and if it isn’t right or fair, we still need to forgive. It may take a lifetime, or it may never happen for someone to change. If you forgive and set the situation free, then you open the door to healing…for yourself. You release the prisoner from within.
The LORD said to Moses, “When you go back to Egypt see that you perform before Pharaoh all the wonders which I have put in your power; but I will harden his heart so that he will not let the people go.