By Diane Houghtaling

Recently I hit a deer with my car. The damage appeared to be minimal. Half of the grill was broken out and there was a small dent in the hood just above the broken grill.

A few days after the accident I wanted to open the hood. But I found that the impact dented it in such a way that I couldn’t get my fingers in to open the latch. Then I wondered if I found someone to open the latch if it would close and lock again.

While pondering this dilemma the Lord allowed me to draw a comparison to our lives. Many of us have suffered situations in our lives that have left some minor damage. The outward scars can be repaired by finding new jobs, new locations, new friends, new relationships, a new church, etc.

But like my car there has been damage done that has locked up a part of us that we do not want to risk opening up again. What if, like the hood of my car, it leads to more problems?

The devil has convinced us that it is safer to remain closed so we won’t have to deal with further problems. By doing that we may avoid some suffering and sorrow, but we simply cannot learn, feel, change, grow, love or live.

My car hood has to be opened up. I have a small oil leak and oil needs to be added. In another thousand miles it will be time for the oil and filter to be changed. There are things that need to be done under the hood in order for my car to run properly or to even run at all.

It is a risk to open the car hood but the risk must be taken.  It is also a risk to open up our hearts after they’ve been closed up. But if we are unwilling to take this risk a part of us will die.

We will have trouble maintaining healthy relationships. We will stay stuck in a place of unforgiveness and bitterness. Our hearts will become hardened and calloused. We will not be able to move forward into the fullness of life that is available to us.

The greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing. The person who risks nothing does nothing, has nothing, is nothing. Open the hood of your life. Expose the problem. Step out in faith and see what God desires to do for you to bring the healing and wholeness that only He can. Become a risk taker.

Hope Ministries Inc. is a Christian counseling center. We are here to help you deal with life’s difficulties. If you want to speak confidentially with someone, call us at (845) 482-5300.