In a beautiful fairy tale by H.C. Andersen “The Snow Queen”, a little boy’s heart turns into ice and he is no longer able to see good or beauty in the world. He stops caring about his loved ones, leaves home, and spends all his time trying to figure out a puzzle, hoping to get a reward. He is rescued by a little girl who loves him and who will stop at nothing to help him heal his heart.
Doesn’t this happen to many of us. It might have been a parent who abandoned us, or a loved one who betrayed us, or a life event that filled us with fear and pain. Our heart is hurt, we close it to protect it, and then all we are able to see is how ugly the world around us is. If someone tries to convince us otherwise, we don’t believe it for a second.
When someone’s heart is closed, they have an appearance and feel of someone who has a wall built around them. Since inside these walls feelings are rejected, it is close to impossible to get this person to be emotionally honest with you or with themselves. Keeping feelings out is of the highest priority for them because it is done to provide control and safety.
Sometimes people with a frozen heart do not know this about their heart. Sometimes they do but have no idea how to heal it. Regardless of whether they are aware of it or not, most of the time, they do not want to heal because anything that might cause them to feel the pain again, even for a second, terrifies them.
Some people with a frozen heart are bitter and mean, others are simply distant and indifferent. In either case, a healthy, loving relationship with someone whose heart is frozen is not possible.
Witnessing someone heal their heart is an honor and when it does happen, it truly is a miracle. Anyone who’s ever been on this journey knows that the impossible hurdles and obstacles that the little girl in the “The Snow Queen” has to overcome in order to help the boy she loves are not an overstatement. It takes time, sacrifice, and courage.
Here is some good news. Ice is a state of water. Just like, under certain conditions, the water molecules slow down and stick together, changing the state of water from liquid to solid, the reverse is not only possible, it is inevitable, when the conditions are right.
The same state change that happens with water will occur with a heart. Unconditional love and forgiveness can melt the coldest of the frozen hearts. Nothing can stop this process when the love is present and the heart is willing. It is just a mater of time and commitment.