Secret Keys of the Heart

Giving God the keys to His home

Links to Poetry by Jihan Maria Nicholas


Memories of Love

Autumn’s Wish


Perfect Peace

“Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee…”

A few mornings ago, I sat curled up in my customary corner of the sofa, my diary in my lap, my Bible lying next to me, and my thoughts in prayer. I routinely rise early in the morning, so as to spend quiet time alone with my Lord, before facing the busyness of a usual work day. That day’s work day would begin earlier than usual, so my quiet time was therefore earlier in the morning.

Upon completing my prayer, I waited, eyes closed; usually, God will speak something in reply, quietly, impressing a thought upon my heart; I waited, but I heard nothing. Then, a novel idea crossed my mind… What if… He’s still sleeping? I chuckled, shaking my head at my impertinence, and thinking that was the end of that. But then… I opened my Bible, and my eyes fell on Psalm 121:3-4. God had an idea of His own: “…He that keepeth thee will not slumber. Behold, He that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.” Yeah… I like His sense of humor.

I continued to search God’s heart, and continued to learn more of His tremendous love. He spoke directly to the issues I was facing, He led me to so many Bible verses that I soaked in like a sponge. Lately, I’ve been falling deeper and deeper in love with Him, with His beauty, with His love, with His soul, with His spirit, His magnitude, His power, His extreme tenderness and gentle leading. Oh, how beautiful He is!

Loving Him so much has taught me what peace is; Isaiah, 26:3: “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee…” Love has taught me what joy and strength are; Nehemiah, 8:10: “…the joy of the Lord is your strength.” As I find strength, peace, and joy in God, I learn to trust Him more and more. The end of Isaiah, 26:3, says, “…because he trusteth in Thee.” “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because he trusteth in Thee.”

What beauty there is in being in love with Christ! What rest one can find in the promise of Isaiah 26:3! I’m continually finding steadier footing in my relationship with Christ as I fall deeper in love with Him, and resultantly trust Him more. As I do so, I learn to rest in Him more, because resting in Him becomes more natural; how can you not automatically feel rest overcome your soul when you’re in the presence and safety of One whom you love and trust so deeply?

That morning was only an episode in a series of communications He continues to lead me in. Daily, I learn more about His love, His humor, His steadfastness, and my own love for Him. Resting in God is a place where we all strive to be; He makes it so easy for us, if we but follow His lead.

“Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because he trusteth in Thee.”

The Treasure

It is said to be one of the three most important treasures one can possess.

I thought it was strictly belief: If one believed in Jesus Christ, His goodness, and His true love for humankind, then they possessed the treasure, which was faith. I still believe this to be true; however, I now understand that faith being comprised of strictly belief misses out on a vital key: trust.

A couple of years ago, I felt as though my world was falling apart. Life had taken a drastic turn I hadn’t planned for and being a very organized and analytical person, it bothered me more than a little. I had no time to deal with the ever-mushrooming problem because my days were long, stressful, and pressured, and my resulting nights were too busy decompressing to take on any more responsibility.

Never once did I deny God’s existence, His love, or His goodness. What I did do was question His plan; question His method of control; question His presence…rather, more accurately, I would question what I considered His lack of making His presence known; which, in my eyes, was worse than His not being there to begin with.

I began to retreat into myself; I began to yearn deeply for an absolute independence with which I could protect myself from ever being let down by the world or anyone in it. Don’t get me wrong, I was safely protected from the darker miseries so many have unfortunately borne. Mine was the more common hardship of thwarted dreams, misplaced trust, and more importantly, misunderstood trust.

Once I matured into a true comprehension of what trust really is, I began my journey back to the spiritual healthiness of fully leaning on God. I began to trust Him like I never had before. Consequently, I noticed a change in my faith as well! I began to understand that faith is not only a belief in the goodness of Christ, but also a trust in the perfectness, the knowledge, and the wisdom of His actions.

Yes, I came to believe that faith is a manifestation of trust in Jesus Christ and His promises; a chosen belief in His kingship; a personal, irreversible decision that He is Lord, God of the Universe, and in complete control. He orchestrates our life and has bigger plans than we can fathom. I trust that though His plans may not always make for a comfortable existence, my reward lies in Eternity, where I will spend countless days in His glory; where His presence will be the most apparent thing my being will know.

Nowadays, I face new challenges, and while I admit I am sometimes frightened by them, and uncertain as to what my future holds, I can truthfully say I have faith. I’m still learning and growing in this beautiful treasure God’s given me and my understanding of it may be but the measly size of a mustard seed, but even so, with it, I can move mountains. And I plan to.

His Love

As I sit here contemplating love
And all its fearless beauty,
As I consider its strong reality
And all that it brings to me,

I am astounded once again,
At how it truly came to be…
I am humbled, I am grateful
For all that was done for me.

Love was selfless, love was pure,
Love was patient, and love was kind.
When on a cross, Love hung dying
He made love real, He made love mine.

Love was strong, stronger than darkness;
The black of death could not defeat it.
Love conquered the grave. Love is life.
Love begins life, and love completes it.

Unconditional Love

This Valentines Day, as everyone is either wishing for that one true love to take captive their heart or spending their time living out the love they’ve found in one another, my thoughts take a different direction.

My thoughts travel back to a time when all I knew was love. No other emotions had yet filled my little heart; no other feelings had yet introduced themselves to me; no other needs had yet made themselves known in my life. I simply was made by love, existed through love, and felt love.

My thoughts travel back to a season in my life’s journey when all I truly knew was my mother. Mama’s was the body that held me until I grew strong enough to exit the safety of the womb. Mama’s was the milk that nourished me until I grew strong enough to handle more advanced substances. Mama’s were the hands that caressed my face, until my hands grew strong enough to reach for hers. Mama’s love grew me to be strong, for love makes you strong.

Mama’s love taught me the meaning of First Corinthians, Chapter 13. Mama suffered through my every pain and showed me what kindness is. Mama pushed me to shine, never needing to be in the spotlight. Mama’s pride was in me, not herself. Mama’s life was lived for me, she taught me the meaning of selflessness. Mama’s love forgives, does not accuse, rejoices in the truth, bears all things, never gives up hope, and endures all pain… Mama’s love never fails.

Now, as I live my life as an adult, and encounter all the different feelings, emotions, and needs that are in an adult’s life, I am confident. No matter the commotion in this busy world, regardless of the congested schedule of life today, I am certain there remains a seed of love, so strong in my heart, that it can overcome the faithless culture of today.

You see, if love is selfless and strong, if love is lived in the way First Corinthians, Chapter 13 so eloquently describes; then love is more powerful than the swarming list of requirements placed on it today.

What is Trust?

Trust is an essential key to one’s hidden corridors of the heart. In my quest to unveil this key’s sometimes obscure reality, I have been studiously focusing on it in my life and in the lives of those around me.

In my observations, I have found that oftentimes, when a belief in guaranteed fulfillment is invested in another’s role in your life, that belief is mistaken for genuine trust. The one who “trusts” is often simply interested in a desire for their dreams to be fulfilled, wishes to be granted, needs to be met. No matter how noble the dream, how selfless the wish, or how vital the need, one must realize their need to fulfill it is their own responsibility. It is not the responsibility of the one in whom they trust. Misconception of trust can lead to a confused and immature existence.

Trust isn’t fulfilled by giving someone their heart’s desire, nor is it earned by a promise to never hurt them. Rather, trust is a version of faith, a hope rested in the goodness of another’s heart, an earned and deserved belief in the selflessness of the trustee’s character. Trust is a conscious commitment that once given, will become blind. Therefore, trust is not fragile, it is strong and sure and the odds of severing it are next to none. Consequently, if trust is broken, a terribly deep root is torn up and thus explains the heart’s bloody rip that is so difficult to bear and takes achingly long to heal. One cannot say they trust someone if they do not understand and embrace these truths. Reserve your trust, and handle it wisely, my friend, for while its nature is not fickle, the human’s is and the method in which you handle your trust is accordingly, as well. How you bestow your trust can either inconceivably enhance and bless, or appallingly, agonizingly obliterate your pure, sincere, and authentic approach to life.

But remember, trust cannot be broken if it is not authentic. Reevaluate, reconsider, and then determine the truth. Trust is such a key aspect of the heart’s life, that one must fully embrace its sometimes dissatisfying reality and implement it correctly to achieve true success in relationships of the heart.