10 I have been there. It took going down a long, desolate road—where I became so exhausted from trying to be a “better person” in order to gain God’s approval— that, eventually, I gave up. I had nothing left to give but a worn-out, broken heart. If God was real and would take me as I am, I needed to know it. Little did I know how powerful that simple, yet honest, cry from my heart would be in setting me on a path to have a true encounter with God’s love. That is when I began seeing hearts everywhere. My heart became overwhelmed as I began to see myself through the eyes of my Heavenly Father and understand the true meaning of His grace. As I began to rest in the assurance of His unconditional love, it not only filled me, but it began to transform and empower me. I was able to forgive those who had hurt me, accept myself, and ultimately break the chains of darkness in my life. His perfect love has brought