A Story I Once Heard in My Heart
I know the truth about who you are and who you’re meant to be. You’ve been sitting in a jail cell in this alien world your whole life. But the door is open. You could walk out at any time if only you could see. Others have told you but you laughed at them. And the jailer has convinced you the jail is really a paradise. It is the great lie. The Father of Lies has tainted your heart to where you believe you love your cell. He feeds you with delicacies and controls your mind with pleasures and you frolic about in your cell laughing & dancing all the while never realizing you are a slave and your life is wasting away.
In the next cell is another creature. You, sir, toil away digging and digging while scowling at the merriment going on around you. Don’t they see there’s work to be done. You aren’t happy here in the cell and you aren’t distracted by momentary fun. You are working for that something more you believe is outside. Others have told you the door is open but you laughed at them. Nothing good comes without discipline you say. So you work harder and harder convinced of your own ability to find a way out. If you want something done right you have to do it yourself. You bury yourself in your work and scoff at the incompetence of your inmates.
Suddenly a light shines into the cell deep into the darkness all around. Everyone is too distracted with themselves to notice. But the light persists. A quiet creature creeps out of the back of the cell not knowing if what they’re seeing is real. Drawn by the beauty & warmth of this glorious light he creeps closer, tentatively, sure he will ruin it by getting too close. But as he draws nearer and nearer the light only grows stronger. He realizes this light has led him to the door. He stands in amazement to see the light showing him that the door really is open! He struggles to believe it. He has tried all sorts of ways of managing his distaste for the jail feeling there must be something wrong with him. He doesn’t find fulfillment in the loves of this world or in the toiling and he’s felt he’s never quite belonged. He steps through surprised at how easily he walks out and how the darkness fades away.
Outside of this cell the glorious light has warmed his heart as the hardness melts. He has become a new creature. Now a new kind of love fills him and he feels safe, hopeful.. FREE. Basking in this warm light he can only barely hear the calling of his name as he continues to walk away.
Once he has been filled with the light he remembers all the people he left behind. He must go tell them the good news! The door is open! You are FREE! He runs back into the darkness and tries to tell them and they laugh at him. “Yes of course the light, we all know about the light” they say and they turn away. “But have you seen it?! Have you followed it?!” You cry out again and again. You leave again in your discouragement and the jailer laughs and tells you you’re wasting your time. You decide maybe he’s right.
Back in the glorious glow of the light you feel you must try again. This time you take a little bit of that light into you to show the others. This gets some attention. Tell me more about the light some say. And so you hold it out to them and some take it and follow and some don’t. You go out and in. Taking the light with you each time.
Sometimes you get so captivated in the light you forget about freeing the others. But now you start to see you’ve been surrounded by more people carrying the light, more escapees and they too venture in & out of the jail cell with you. The jailer starts to notice this and tries to put things in your way to prevent you from going in and out. He brings about temptations of things that you find hard to walk away from. Sometimes he wins. Sometimes you do. But you keep going back into the light. The light feeds you, it strengthens you. It shines out ahead of you to direct your steps. The light starts to spread through you so that now you can stay shining in the darkness for longer. And so you stay in the darkness so that others can see the light. And your life has been given up to follow the light for the sake of the others.
Inspired by: “You Will Go Free”
You’ve been a prisoner, baby.
Been a prisoner all your life.
Held captive in an alien world where they hold your need for love to your throat like a knife.
And they make you jump.
And they make you do tricks.
They take what started off such an innocent heart, and they break it, and break it, and break it until it almost can’t be fixed.
Well I don’t know when and I don’t know how,
I don’t know how long it’s gonna take,
I don’t know how hard it will be, but I know you will go free.
Now you can call it the devil, call it the big lie,
Call it a fallen world, whatever it is, it ruins almost everything we try.
It’s the sins of the fathers, yeah, and it’s the choices we make,
It’s people screaming without making a sound, from prison cells in paradise where we’re chained to our mistakes.
And I don’t know when and I don’t know how,
I don’t know how much it’s gonna cost you, probably everything.
I know you will go free.
You can’t see a jailer, you can’t see the bar,
You can’t turn your head around fast enough, but it’s everywhere you are,
It’s all around you,
Everywhere you walk, these prison walls surround you.
But in the midst of all his darkness, yeah, in the middle of the night.
I see the truth cut through this curtain like a laser, like a pure and holy light.
And I know I can’t touch you now, yeah, and I don’t want to speak too soon,
But when we get sprung from out these cages, baby, God knows what we might do.
But I don’t know when and I don’t know how, yeah,
I don’t know if you’ll be leaving alone or you’ll be leaving with me,
But I know you will go free.
I know the truth will set you free,
The truth about who you are
The truth about who you were always meant to be,
Yeah, you will go free.