I love this picture of my granddaughter. Not because she is sad, but because it shows something very special about her...she is a girl! She feels deeply! When she is up-she is up, and when she is down-she is down. She wears her emotions right out there for all to see (and hear!) and she doesn't care who witnesses it. Of course, she is only two years old, which is probably why she doesn't think much about what others think of her. We all know that will change.
One day the acceptance of her feelings and the expression of them will be tempered by maturity as she grows up. Hopefully to the point of no more tantrums! Yet, not to the point of not being real and open with others about what is felt in her heart. As women we are not always so open about our emotions. We don't always trust to lay them out for all, or anyone, to see. We ride through our lives in the center lane. That place of safety...not too fast, not too slow. Staying clear of exposing too much of who we really are.
Hearts are tender and valuable; they do need to be guarded and protected. But they also need to be shared. What lies within our hearts is the essence of who we really are, what we feel, and believe. It is where we "hide" the precious things, like God's Word. As we give Him our lives, we give Him our hearts, and they become deep wells of His love and compassion to others.
I have been guilty of staying in the middle lane, glancing too often in my rear view mirror, afraid to change lanes. It is a comfortable place to be, but life itself has a way of moving you over; situations with other travelers or the flow of traffic can move you and adjust your speed whether you like it or not. I have learned it can be a good thing to experience the exhilaration of the fast lane (the wind in my hair), and also to experience the calming effects of the slow lane.
Life is a journey with its many highs and lows, but along the way what a blessing it would be to reach out and touch the other travelers with the one thing that is uniquely ours...our hearts. To laugh, cry, dance, sing, praise, shout, clap, mourn and even get angry. To live life to the fullest with the emotions God has given us.