Don’t depend on your armor

It’s Narcissist Friday!

One of the most popular misspellings for Americans involves the words “callus” and “callous.” A callus is the hard layer of skin you might have on your foot. A person is said to have a callous attitude or heart. The fact that they both come from the same Latin word and that they both refer to being hardened only adds to the spelling confusion. One way to remember the difference is to say:

Oh, the callous way the doctor removed my callus.

That might remind you to tie the “o” to the adjective or descriptive word, rather than the noun.

I know you don’t come here for spelling lessons. But I also know that most of us have developed many calluses as we have walked through our lives. Those calluses may cause us to be callous toward others.

A callus is a type of armor. The thickened skin protects a place that was injured or has been subjected to repeated abuse. That’s why you get them on the bottom of your feet. It’s also why you probably have developed armor around your heart. A calloused heart is one that has a thick barrier against pain caused by others.

Even good relationships have rough spots. We don’t want to fight all the battles or argue all the points, so we cover our hurts and try to protect ourselves from being hurt again. We develop, as they say, a “thick skin.”

Sometimes we think our armor will be enough to protect us through the future. We build boundaries in our lives, avoid certain people and topics, and learn not to react in ways we don’t want. We become tough, and we think that becoming tougher is the answer to handling the struggles of life.

This isn’t bad unless it separates us from good people and good support. At the same time, it may not be enough. We were not made to protect ourselves. From the time we were born, we have been getting tougher, but we have also encountered new ways of being hurt. But we have always needed help. We need more than we can provide for ourselves.

The sad truth is that narcissists and other abusers know how to get under our thick skin. I wish I could emphasize this point. These people often seem to be expert at slipping past our defenses, breaking down our boundaries, and penetrating our armor. Their charm and ruthless aggression somehow allow them to violate us no matter how well we prepare ourselves. So, our armor often serves only to keep good people away.

Instead, we should use that armor to protect us as we open ourselves to support from other people, understanding that some will hurt us whether intentionally or not. We should also use it to avoid the obvious abusers and manipulators. The armor has a good purpose.

We should also pray. Ask the Lord to reveal the hearts and intentions of those around us. He knows who will hurt us. He knows who we should avoid. Then, as He leads us, we should listen.

You see, you are never alone. There is One who knows. He knows your weaknesses, the chinks in your armor. He knows how others think about you. If you listen to Him, He will lead you in relationships from business to love. Ask Him to be a part of all your relationships to protect you. Then listen.

No matter how well you build your armor, you simply don’t have the experience or knowledge to protect yourself in every situation. The abusers know this. But God is your help, your strong fortress, your Protector. Look to Him.

********

I’m excited! 

Those who read here know that I am “absolutely, completely, permanently, eternally dependent on Jesus!”  My only hope in life and for the future is the love of Jesus for me. 

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is book-cover-5x8-1.jpg

So, I wrote a little book called, “Jesus Loves Me – This I Know.”  Obviously, it centers on the widely known first verse of the song most of us knew as children.  Those words, which still touch the hearts of so many in and out of the church, remind us of the simple truth of God’s love in Jesus. 

Written as a poem by Anna Warner to be included in a book written by her sister, Jesus Loves Me was quickly brought into homes and churches and even the camps of the Civil War.    It has remained one of the most beloved songs of our faith.

What excites me today is that I can offer this book at a low price so you can send it to family and friends over the holidays.  At just 80 pages, it is a quick read that may break through to hardened hearts and warm the hearts of those who walk with the Lord. 

The Amazon price for this book is just $5.99.  At that price, you can buy several to give as gifts.  But listen: buy the ebook first.  Read through it to decide if you would like to use it to touch the hearts of your loved ones and neighbors.  The ebook is only $3.99, and you will have plenty of time to read it and make your order before the holidays. 

I hope to have a couple more books out before the end of the year, but this little book has such potential that I wanted to get it ready first.  Of course, if you read it and like it, I’d be blessed by a positive review on Amazon. 

Frankly, if I cut the price any lower, the only ones making anything on the book will be Amazon.  As it is, I will get only a little over a dollar from each book sold.  That’s okay, because I want this to get out.  I believe it will be a blessing for anyone who reads it.  It might even be the thing God uses to get word of His love to someone who has forgotten. 

So, please consider downloading the ebook.  Check it out.  Then, if the Lord leads, buy several to give to others.  Just click on the photo of the book cover to get to the Amazon page.

Thanks!

NOTE: I should be able to fill orders for those who do not wish to use Amazon very soon. Check Monday’s post for more information.

1 Comment

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One response to “Don’t depend on your armor

  1. This is a beautiful post! I’m going to Amazon to buy your new ebook right now.

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