Read an Excerpt
The Million Boxes of a Heart
By Lunga Phewa
Trafford PublishingCopyright © 2013 Lunga Phewa
All rights reserved.
THE STARTING-OUT BOX
A heart is made up of a million boxes—at least let's think of it that way. These boxes are all arranged in a pattern that should never be touched, manipulated, rearranged or corrupted. The nature of these boxes is set to guide us, direct us and show us the way of life, how pleasant it is, and how cruel it can be. All step-by-step.
The Beginning box. This is birth. This is where we are introduced to this thing called life. Where we are guided every step of the way. I call this the flexible box. By nature, this is the biggest box inside everyone's heart. It is clean, neat and ready to be occupied. This is childhood. At this phase we are naturally clueless of everything around us and all the many curiosities that wrestle within us. And one thing I find vital about this box, something to always be careful about; its memory never erases anything. What is inside your Starting-out box?
The Lord says, "A day is coming when I will restore the kingdom of David, which is like a house fallen into ruins ... I will bring them home and they will rebuild their ruined cities and live there. They will plant vineyards and drink the wine; they will plant gardens and eat what they grow."
The Lord your God has spoken.
You are probably wondering, how did life come to this? Dating back at childhood your box was filled with nothing but happiness, warmth and peace. You recall all the joyful moments you spent with those who treated you well and left a mark in your heart. Now you look at life and compare both the times and lament, 'What did I do wrong?'
Life has turned out to be so complicated. Something you never ever imagined as a child. All the happiness and smiles your box contains seems to be a fairy tail in this present life that you're faced with. At times you wish you didn't have to grow. You long for that old peace that reigned all day long as a child. You feel like all walls are coming down each day you grow. Even at night you still cry tears that no one understands cause only you know how much joy and peace childhood had compared to how life is now. You still don't understand why they had to go away and leave you all by yourself. Your Starting-out box still reminds you of a life you would trade in anything to obtain again. What happened? Why this much difference?
When Job had had enough of the suffering he was going through, the Bible tells us he broke the silence and began cursing the day he was born.
"O God, put a curse on the day I was born; put a curse on the night I was conceived. Turn that day into darkness, God. Never again remember that day; never again let light shine on it.
Growing up life must have been something for job, can't say good; can't say bad. But I know through hard work he had all he ever wanted, every valuable asset. But all of a sudden he finds himself faced with this horrible tragedy of a loss of children, livestock and his health on the edge. And so he curses the day in which he was born. He curses childhood. He curses his Starting-out box. Why? It's Simple: However life turns out to be in the future, it will still, and always will be haunted by the good and bad memories of childhood. Perhaps in his case these sufferings reminded him of a life he once experienced as a child. A life of pain, and a life of struggle. A life where peace was nothing but a myth. Or, perhaps childhood reminded him of the love he received, the protection that once surrounded him. Suppose birth stirred up the memory of those loving arms that cannot and will never hold him again. Warmth that will never comfort him again, and peace that will never be found again. See when we are faced with a dreadful situation all these thoughts come to life and torment us because they show us a way into happiness but happiness that just won't be obtainable no more. Sometimes it's the opposite, these memories can take us back to that part of the box where pain was all we knew. That part where smiling was just not possible. They can cultivate that hate which we'd believed to have faded with time. They can make us relive every moment of that troubling part of childhood. This box sure does contains vital stuff!
There's a film I love titled, The Prestige. Just a movie about magic. I learnt some things from that movie; 'that every great magic trick consist of three important parts or acts. First part is called the Pledge; the magician shows you something ordinary. A deck of card, a bird or a man. Things that your mind is familiar to. He will show you this object so that you inspect it to confirm that it's real, normal and ordinary. But of course it probably isn't. The second act is called the Turn; the magician takes the ordinary something and makes it do something extraordinary. Now you're looking for the secret but you won't find it, because of course you're not really looking; you don't really want to know. You want to be fooled. Now the trick has been pulled, but you wouldn't clap yet, because making something disappear isn't enough. You have to bring it back. That's why then in every magic trick there's a third act; the hardest part. The part we call the Prestige. That's the part with the twists and the turns, where lives hang in the balance. And you see something shocking that you've never seen before.'
And that's exactly how the Devil works. He fools people into believing on what isn't real but makes it appear as if is. Using the memories inside your Starting-out box, he has stolen every bit of joy you can have of waking up in the morning and the joy of actually being alive. He has taken the memory of your father or mother abandoning you and turned it into something extra-terrible. He has manipulated the memory of childhood of when you were molested, kidnapped, raped, abused, and despised. He turned it all into something never ever heard of before. Something super horrible. He has convinced you that the happiness you grew up in was only for childhood, but in reality life is hard, happiness costs money and that eternal life is something that doesn't exist. He has turned the memories of laughter you once had as a child into some fairy tale you hardly can recall. But is all that true though? Are you the only boy who has ever been abused by his parents or relatives during childhood? No! Are you the only girl who has ever been sexually abused by a parent or from outside as a child? No! Are you the first person to have lost a parent on a car crash or incurable disease as a child? No! Was your family the first to have buglers break in and steal everything back when you were still a child? No! And yes, pain can never be compared. Each person's suffering is unique, horrible and harmful in its own way. Then you ask yourself, 'If my case isn't a rare one, then why does it feel so different than to what others have experienced?'
It's simple; the Devil never wants you to heal. That leads us then to the 'Prestige' part. The hardest part. The part that exposes all the lies, all the tricks and all the methods that Satan has been using to keep you fooled and blinded from knowing the truth that sets everyone free from the wounds and scars locked within the Starting-out box. And the truth is that God has always been willing to restore the joy and peace you once had as a child. He is all out in offering you the warmth you once felt and the happiness you once knew. Satan tried to turn your childhood experiences into something horrible, but Jesus has come to restore peace and show you how such experiences make you special-however frightening they are! Jesus will set you free from the fear of taking pride about your Starting-out box and the haunting that such memories bring. Satan's aim was to draw your entire focus and attention to all the bad things that happened to you twenty years ago, and so destroy all the good fruits and blessings that the future holds in store for you. He saw how trying you were in shaping a better future for yourself and your children, and began haunting you with all the many happy moments you had as a child under the care of those who loved and protected you. He convinced you and has now got you to believe that such happiness was bound to never lasting. His trick worked; and you were left fooled. But today is the day of your recovery. The day God will reorder the items of your Starting-out box. You just need faith. You need to look pass the pain that's inside your Starting-out box, and begin to acknowledge the good moments that childhood let you experience. Some children were aborted; never even had the chance to start-out. In spite of whatever happened to you long ago, you can still heal and receive such happiness that even childhood never offered. You will take back the curses that you've put over your Starting-out box. You will begin to see the difference in men again; acknowledge and value all people again. Today and tomorrow will prove itself as to how different it is from yesterday. The box will be neat, cleaned and purified again. Every hate, every grudge and every evil will be destroyed.
I mean let's look at it deeply; we live in a world of forever changing time. One time we say life is good, then second time around, life's hard. What is it that occupies your Starting-out box? And yes, it does matter what lies inside that box. Some of us have tried and still trying to close and remove that box because of the many scars and tears filled within it. You must understand, the purpose of this chapter is not to let you experience the pains and heartaches of that which you believed to have been erased and buried-No! This is God giving you the strength to confront every demon and every test that was left un-dealt with. This box is very important. Most people today have become victims of failures in life because they pursued tomorrow with the hope that whatever happened yesterday wont follow them and impact their future the unfortunate way. That is a good mindset, it's wise to focus on what lies ahead then to waste all your opportunities over yesterdays mistakes and flaws. But it's even better to deal with yesterday and be at peace with the past. The Starting-out box involves every person who first made contact with you, either physically or emotionally.
This box contains all the hurt, the events and the joys of times past. What's inside your box?
Is it the joyful times you wish should've stayed forever? Is it the childhood games you hoped will last always? As a child you were innocent in everyway. Your box was decorated with the red and yellow flowers of grandmother's backyard garden. Until he came along. Until she went away. The beauty of your box faded away, and pain occupied it.
Even when you think about it today, still anger burns and hatred boils.
You are not the only one, many are still in the process of dealing with all the waste and mess that has taken all the space inside their Starting-out boxes. That's why we have people who believe every bad and terrible thing that falls on them is a haunting that first stole their childhood innocence. They feel cursed!
When God designed the box, it was meant for happiness and full-time laughter. Remember, this is a child we are talking about. An innocent soul that deserved love, care and acceptance.
This box should've been filled with all the good times of childhood. All the unforgettable moments of being inside mother's and daddy's loving arms. Instead something invaded it and ruined it for good. See, some things we think we have dealt with and have solved. But if we still refuse and fear to speak and make testimony or reference about, then we can only be sure they are still in charge and directing the way we are and should feel about the many new things that now surround us as well as the fear for the future.
Ok, maybe this will paint a more clear picture of how much impact this box can have over one's entire life. Most women today still think differently of a man, and they are even scared to give them a chance to friendship—let alone intimate commitment. This wasn't always the case, it's because the first man she allowed into her space as a child took advantage of her innocence and cluelessness and hurt her, destroying every reason she would have had of feeling proud and grateful about her gender, her role and her entire existence. This box was corrupted, and a life was destroyed.
And apart from women, some men today have chosen to stay away from women because of various reasons. Some were abused by their mothers. The one person who should have been their rock and amour. Some had to constantly witness their fathers abuse their mothers. And now years later they've also decided to keep away from women, because of the fear of doing the same bad things they grew up under.
The Starting-out box is very sensitive. Every event is stored and played again and again until one finally confronts such events and make peace with them.
Now, How does God fit into all of this? Remember, this is no longer creation—it's mending stage.
'He led me all round the valley, and I could see that there were very many bones and that they were very dry. He said to me, "Mortal man, can these bones come back to life?"
... "Tell these bones that I, the Sovereign Lord am saying to them: I am going to put breath into you and bring you back to life. I will give you sinews and muscles, and cover you with skin. Then you will know that I am the Lord."
You see God is aware of the many troubles and struggles you've had to endure as a child. From that first curse word and that slap of an abuser, God knew your box had been contaminated. Studies have proven to show that children learn and grasp faster than adults. And so your box was corrupted at the right time by whoever wrong person that was. But now God is offering to help clean and restore the box to its rightful form. But will not touch the good events and the awesome memories that still brings out your smile, that keep you wishing, 'If only time was reversible.'
Unless you deal completely with the bad things inside your starting out box, joy will continue being conditional just as is now. Now that's not happiness, nor a happy life. God will help you forgive every person who've played a role in corrupting your starting out box which should have been for laughter but became a storage for pain.
Can these dry bones come back to life? Can you learn to smile again; not from pretense but from joy that flows free from your heart? Can you still accept your family again in spite of all that they've put you through during childhood? Your box can still have a meaning, store life and bring you happy memories. Provided you delete completely the ones you know hurt you.
God is willing to help you move on ahead with your life. A life that will be free from grudges. A life that will be set free from hatred, and a life that will have received restoration and a second chance. You will discover that men aren't all the same, as the belief has spread. You will reach out again to those who aim and propose to love you, care for you and protect you. Yes, you will open up to everyone, like you first did to those who turned out to harm you and later destroyed you. This box will be neat again, filled with thoughts of that which was good and adorable. It's unfortunate you won't be able to start afresh again and be born anew physically. But God through Jesus will give you spiritual birth that will far more exceed the physical that you once knew and experienced. It's funny yet again sad that some people were so hurt at their Starting-out box that even today they even fear society as a whole. So you can only imagine what must have went wrong at childhood. Others fear a vehicle, because it took away their loved ones. That Trauma that filled the box at childhood, is still the same trauma that has destroy all hope for the future. Others it's fear, others it's hate. They hate women. They hate men. They hate White people. They hate Black people. And others hate themselves. Why? Something was introduced to the box, something that should have not existed in the first place. But whatever the case is; today God is offering you a way out of that darkness. Forgive everyone and let them know you've chosen peace over these heavy chains you've once thought you can live with. Jesus understands how much of a task for you this is, and he is there to strengthen you all the way. Because the ever-told truth remains; Forgiveness is for you, never about the other person. This box has carried these troubles and been in pains for years, take this opportunity that God has made present for you be your step out of darkness and into freedom. You can't carry this load any longer, and you certainly can't pretend forever. Even the dead don't do such a thing.
Excerpted from The Million Boxes of a Heart by Lunga Phewa. Copyright © 2013 Lunga Phewa. Excerpted by permission of Trafford Publishing.
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