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!