X is for Xiphoid Process
Xiphoid means sword-shaped, and the xiphoid process is a sword-shaped bone that stands in the gap between our two sets of ribs to defend our hearts from physical injury. What a picture it is of our militaristic attempts to defend our hearts from the trauma of emotional injury, too. We wield our inner vows and resolutions like weapons: "I'll never let anyone do that to me again." "Nobody's going to get close enough to hurt me that way any more." "I'll never trust a......."
Unlike the ziphoid process, our self-made armor does its own damage to the heart by hardening it. When we stiffen our hearts against pain, we also reduce their capacity for joy and love and peace.
I bless you today to risk the pain of an undefended heart so that Father God can soften and heal it. I bless you to be able to feel His compassionate tenderness and to rejoice with Him.