Monday, March 06, 2006

Secret Garden

Bruce Springsteen's song - 'Secret Garden' tells the condition that not lies just in a woman's heart, but that of every human's soul. For those who are unfamiliar with the song, it goes like this:

She'll let you in her house
If you come knockin' late at night
She'll let you in her mouth
If the words you say are right
If you pay the price
She'll let you deep inside
But there's a secret garden she hides

She'll let you in her car
To go drivin' round
She'll let you into the parts of herself
That'll bring you down
She'll let you in her heart
If you got a hammer and a vise
But into her secret garden, don't think twice

You've gone a million miles
How far'd you get
To that place where you can't remember
And you can't forget

She'll lead you down a path
There'll be tenderness in the air
She'll let you come just far enough
So you know she's really there
She'll look at you and smile
And her eyes will say
She's got a secret garden
Where everything you want
Where everything you need
Will always stay
A million miles away

I believe that in everyone lies their own secret garden in their hearts. This secret garden holds our deepest and darkest secrets and desires, which we will guard all cost. We find it difficult to share it with even our closest friends or confidant. Most of the time, it is because of fear, the fear of rejection; other times, maybe we feel that no one could understand, comprehend, or appreciate it. So, we carry on in life, hiding this secret garden from everyone. In truth, we long to share it with someone, but yet we refrain because of fear.

Our secret garden can contain many different things. For some, it could be their sins - past and present, bad experiences and struggles, where shame is their motive for hiding it. It also can contain dreams and desires, some so bizzare or out-of-this-world, and thus we hide it because we fear others would belittle it. Some of us keep our 'secret love', usually a love for someone else in our secret garden because we feel that the love is forbidden (the person is attached/married to someone else) and we fear that we will be frowned upon or rejected if word gets out. Maybe we keep it secret because we want to protect the other person's heart, but yet, in the end, we feel left out and lonely. We could also be unaware of this secret garden altogether, which could be why sometimes we express or feel some unexplained emotions.

In Psalm 139, David describe his own secret garden. In verse 1, he begins: "O Lord, you have searched me and you know me." and goes on describing in detail how God is omniscient; where nothing is hidden from Him, even our secret garden. And thru Christ Jesus, God in knowing all that is within us, has chosen to not condemn us, but instead given us the Spirit of life. To me, this is the greatest news ever, because we can bring our weaknesses, joys, deepest secrets and desires, struggles, dreams and aspirations to God, and need not to feel ashamed or belittled.

Being Christians these days, it's often easy for us to 'play church'. We can attend church week after week, without growing, nor changing for the better. This however, is not God wants, because He desires that we die to ourselves everyday, and to arise with Him in our Spirits. And it doesn't matter what are struggles are because Christ, whom the bible describes as one that is familiar with our suffering and struggles, has made it possible for us to to become overcomers.

Isn't it great that we can come to God and share with Him our secret garden? And more than that, God is more than happy to be invited into it. No matter how our garden may look like, whether it's unkept, dead or may it even be blooming with flowers, God will still love us and in time, with us trusting Him more and more by surrendering ourselves to Him, He will transform that secret garden of ours into something that's so beautiful, that words will fail to describe it.

I guess that if we can't let God in to secret garden, it'll probably be harder to let anyone else in. God has made it easy for us to talk to Him thru prayer. In Revelations 3:20, Jesus said "Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me." May we welcome Him in today.

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