The Artichoke Analogy, Part 1

Wednesday, June 13th, 2012

I’m currently reading a book by Kelly Minter entitled “The Fitting Room”.  She makes me laugh!  In the book, she gives an analogy about an artichoke.  Although I’ve never purchased an artichoke, I think I will…maybe even today.  Not because I want to use it in my next meal (although I’m all about the artichoke…I’ve just always used canned) but because I want to see how difficult it is to retrieve the actual heart.  Kelly talks about “whittling away the pointy leaves”, the “peeling away of layers”, all to recover the “furry little choke out of the center of the heart”.

She uses the artichoke analogy in discussing forgiveness. I’d like to piggy-back off of what she is saying and take it a step into the direction of my life and possibly into yours.  About two years into our marriage, Jason and I were lying in bed one night and he opened the door, about one inch into his secret life.  He told me a couple of details about he and a co-worker and an inappropriate relationship they had shared.  I was shocked and hurt.  I wanted to understand, know all the details, process.  But as quickly as Jason opened the door, he shut it.  I was confused.  I ultimately believed it was my fault.  And I quickly forgave him.  I didn’t want to deal with all those ugly feelings.

Fast-forward 9 months and I was on a vacation with a girlfriend.  I realized my heart was incredibly bitter towards Jason.  I hadn’t forgiven him.  My heart was sick.

Hebrews 12:14-15  “Work at getting along with each other and with God. Otherwise you’ll never get so much as a glimpse of God. Make sure no one gets left out of God’s generosity. Keep a sharp eye out for weeds of bitter discontent. A thistle or two gone to seed can ruin a whole garden in no time.”  (from The Message)

I vowed to go home and work towards becoming whole.  I’d like to say whole again, but I’m not sure I ever was whole to begin with!  As I allowed myself to feel these feelings and work through them, I started the process of “whittling” away at the “pointy leaves”, so that I could ultimately uncover the beautiful heart that God had/has in store for me.

Galatians 5:22-23  “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.”

That is what is in store for me, and for you!  But it isn’t easy.  It’s a long arduous process.  I’ll be back tomorrow with part 2 of the artichoke!

11 thoughts on “The Artichoke Analogy, Part 1

  1. Margarita Nunez

    September 8, 2018  |  03:47 am

    Hi. I’m Maggie and am feels no very alone. I need guidance.

    • Shelley Martinkus

      September 9, 2018  |  04:30 pm

      Maggie – I will send you an email. xo – Shelley

  2. xiomara herrera

    January 30, 2019  |  02:41 pm

    Dear Shelly… I am very aware about sexual addiction in men since 20 years ago I got to learn a lot about it because of a relationship I was saying in about myself. I have been in a dating relationship for 2 and 1/2 months with someone died I feel truly loves me and I love him also but came to find out yesterday that 13 years ago by an encounter he met an escorts and 3 years later called her and had a relationship for about a year-and-a-half and then 11 months ago he said he felt do you need to have sex and called her up and was with her for about 3 days. I expressed my disappointment of his character did have been with such a woman and demand that I was considering marrying not leaving me much trust in him. he feels that I ridiculed and I angry and hurt, I’m not understanding why I feel the way I do I don’t feel as safe for me to move forward in this relationship since he has not worked the sexual addiction yet, when I had talked about him a month-and-a-half ago because of other thinks that he shared with me he told me he would be interested to go to a workshop, but I’m very very disappointed at this time and extremely insecure to continue my relationship with him. I appreciate any feedback you can please give me. Thank you so much!

  3. Brittany

    May 14, 2019  |  11:14 am

    Hi, I’m Brittany. And I need guidance.

    • Shelley Martinkus

      May 15, 2019  |  08:22 am

      Hi Brittany – I will email you directly. xo – Shelley

  4. Patricia

    August 29, 2019  |  08:20 am

    Hi Shelly.
    My husband just moved out and I feel it is all my fault.
    I did not know how to put aside my trauma and accept anything
    positive he might have been doing, and I never believed anything he did.

    • Shelley Martinkus

      August 31, 2019  |  08:31 am

      Hi Patty – Thanks for reaching out to me. I am so sorry to hear of your hurt and fear with your husband moving out and the weight you are feeling – that it’s all your fault. I feel 100% confident it is NOT all your fault. I’m going to send you a quick email as well to see how I can help further. xo – Shelley

  5. Patty

    September 12, 2019  |  07:31 pm

    Hi Shelly,
    My husband disclosed his infidelity April, 2019. I also need guidance.

    • Shelley Martinkus

      September 18, 2019  |  10:08 am

      Hi Patty –

      I will send you an email to the address your provided. Thanks for reaching out. xo – Shelley

  6. Angie

    April 6, 2020  |  08:54 pm

    My husband confessed his infidelity 6 years ago. It took him many years after his betrayal before he finally confessed. We went to counseling, completed a ‘forgiveness’ session and even renewed our vows but there is still a part of me that feels angry and resentful. I fear I will never be able to fully forgive him. I need help!

    • Shelley Martinkus

      April 8, 2020  |  03:33 pm

      Hi Angie –

      I am going to send you a personal email as well. Thank you for sharing your heart here. I just want to say for you and anyone else that reads these comments – it’s so important that you honor how you feel. Grief is tricky because we cycle through the stages – it isn’t linear. And even when we do things like forgive and renew vows – it doesn’t mean the healing is complete or that there isn’t any pain anymore. I know it seems silly of us to expect that to be the case – but oftentimes – we feel pressure from our husbands to move forward and then we feel trapped and as if we can’t justify feeling how we actually feel. All that to say – honor how you feel. It means there is more grief work to do. That’s not bad and it doesn’t mean you can’t heal – it just means there is more to release. xo – Shelley

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