VULNERABLE WITH WHOM?
We can talk about what is happening in society. We can talk about what is happening in the world.
But what, (perhaps needless to say), is happening inside us, is what we are most familiar with.
Being self-conscious human beings, means – our self-awareness leads us to personal concerns – first.
Everyone’s aspirations differ, I guess with some overlapping, but never quite the same.
Our mind is pre-preoccupied with the body we live in. First-things-first is usually subjective.
We are fragile flesh. Prone to the same highs and lows.
Body, soul and spirit beings.
Inescapably we succumb to self-interest first, punctuated by a few sacrifices we may have made for others along the way, in order to change our self-oriented daily narrative.
Christians or non-Christians, acts of charity, and good deeds-done are common to all.
Some have been more sacrificial than others, in their service to their fellow man.
I am way down the pecking order when it comes to good deeds done, to the benefit of my fellow man.
I can only hope that my service of ‘words’ has helped others to some small degree, along the way.
But mankind is housed in flesh, and we all have this earthly tent in common. We live in these corruptible bodies, with all our mutual limitations.
We are prone, as is said of Elijah: ‘to like passions.’
James 5/17: Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months
Despite these ‘like passions’ common to us all – Elijah (Elias) was a spiritual man, able to pray and receive answers.
Many believe in vulnerability. Many believe they should share their weaknesses openly with all who will listen.
This they usually conclude is being real. We should be free to share our innermost weaknesses and needs, they believe, to authenticate our genuineness.
Others consider this to be airing their dirty linen in public.
Dictionary – To discuss very private, personal matters, especially that which may be embarrassing, in public or with other people.
When we share such private thoughts, we leave ourselves open to ridicule or unfair judgment from others.
It establishes in their minds a certain outlook towards us.
Even if we grow, and overcome those inner weaknesses, it may well be, they remain convinced, that we have not, indeed, overcome.
And should we fall yet again into negative behaviour of whatever kind, they affirm to themselves that indeed, we have not moved on.
Allowing ourselves to be vulnerable is not the whole answer to finding help. We need to ask “with whom can I, or should I, be vulnerably open?”
Those who are at all familiar with this blog, and this season of Christian-perspective posts, will not be surprised in the least at my next exhortation:
Vulnerability, that is – being vulnerable and therefore usually confessional – in an acceptable manner is firstly vertical, before it is horizontal.
Prayer to Christ Jesus the one who is seated at the right hand of God the Father, in an unimaginable way, and who ever lives to represent those who want Him as their saviour and advocate, is the vertical friendship that I am referring to.
A man who has friends must himself be friendly, But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
Christ Jesus is that friend that sticks closer than a human being/brother, if He is invited into our lives.
He is never surprised at your vulnerability, nor ignorant of your attempts to be and do what is right. He is compassionate and understanding, willing to forgive when you fail, and willing to comfort the downhearted in His presence, where there is fullness of joy.
Be – as vulnerable as you want to be – with Him. Tell Him honestly what you think of yourself. Share with Him your most intimate thoughts.
Having done this – you can then move from vertical communion with Christ to the horizontal, in finding a real, true human friend, to open your heart to.
This is not always an easy task. But don’t give up, there are still some genuine, ethically sound, sincere counsellors who will keep confidence, and lend a helping hand.
You know I’m going to add – Christian ones.
Despite the onslaught of failure amongst people in positions of trust, and despite the hypocritical representation of religion, there are still those who are salt and light.
Men and women dealing with the same weaknesses Elijah, and you and I, contend with, both in ourselves and our fellow human beings.
Like Elijah the prophet – we can still pray and get results, especially in areas of subjectivity.
To finish – I must bind myself to the first part of the verse quoted above:
A man who has friends must himself be friendly…
I raise my glass of coke –
“Here’s to your friendship”