I wish you hadn't brought your porcelain doll into the kitchen.
Not because it's not where she belongs -- it's not -- but because if you hadn't, she wouldn't be broken. And her cute little ankle-wrap shoes and feet would not be cracked and glued.
That doll. I don't know what it was about her that captivated you so, but honestly, sweet girl, she captivated me too. Maybe it's her dress or her face. No, I think it's the shoes. Definitely the shoes. You and I both commented on her adorable shoes, and I saw in your 7-year-old eyes the same shoe lust that was in my own.
You had to have that doll, even following your grandmother around the yard, offering to pay her for it. There are few things in this world that you have taken to so quickly and persistently as if no other doll in the world would do except this one. I understand, sweetie, really I do.
Sometimes your heart just wants something so badly, it can't be denied.
And my dear girl, I hope you follow your heart. Always. Listen to it. And follow it. No matter what. Even if I say that I know better. Even if I try and stop you. Follow it. And then tell me to read this post. I'll cry and argue, but that would be better than you living with regret inside your tender heart.
But there's something else I need to tell you. Your heart? That true thing inside your chest? It is more precious, more delicate than your doll. And just like your doll doesn't belong in the kitchen lest she break accidentally, your heart doesn't belong where it isn't protected.
Guard your tender heart. Hide it deep in God's own heart. Bury it deep in His truth.
People, especially boys, will try and take your heart. They will try and buy it with their words, their gifts, their affectionate embraces. But guard it. Don't give it away too easily. Don't sell it to anyone for any price.
Your heart is a priceless treasure.
Dear girl, I'm not just talking about sex. You don't even understand what that is yet. I'm talking about all those things we women try and fill our hearts with, the things we try and exchange for them. Don't give it to a boy just because you want a date on Friday night. Don't give it to a friend because you don't want to feel left out. Don't give it to a job just because you need a paycheck. Don't put it on a scale just to make it fit into a smaller size. Don't cover it up with too much make-up and don't flaunt it in too short skirts. Don't put it on a shelf and don't wear it on your sleeve.
God put your heart inside your chest because it's fragile and it needs a cage to protect it.
My sweet girl, we were able to pick up all the pieces and gingerly glue them back in place. But, her feet are not the same. Those cute shoes are cracked and glue squishes out of them. Then I covered them in lace, to protect the cracks and keep the pieces together. It's like a pretty band-aid. And you looked at those silly lace casts and said how beautiful they are. And this made mommy cry inside. Your gentle acceptance stirred something deep.
That you would see beauty where I only see brokenness made your mama weep.
And though you're not perfect -- nor am I -- that is how God sees us. As beautiful, priceless treasures. He doesn't see our imperfections. He chooses not to see our mistakes and our sins. But He always sees our beauty because He made us to reflect Him.
I know that as you walk through life, your heart is going to break. I know that you're going to have disappointments that hurt a little too much. I know that you're going to face choices that make you choose between your heart and someone else's wishes. I know that you're going to sometimes choose the wrong thing and break your own heart unknowingly.
And that's okay, sweet girl, because I'm always here for you. I'll help you pick up the pieces and look for the beauty. But, sweet one, do me a favor, guard that heart. Hold it close like you hug that doll to your chest. And I'll be standing by, cheering you on and holding the glue.