19 Safe PeoplePosted: April 28, 2012
A righteous man is cautious in friendship. Proverb 12:26
God is healing us. Jesus meets our deepest needs for love and acceptance. In the journey away from perfectionism, God ministers to us and often uses people. These people reflect the love of Jesus. We need their fellowship to heal because isolation breeds shame and self-hatred. Separation magnifies shame. We actually need healthy connection with others to let go of shame.
To those who have been deeply wounded this may sound like bad news. Friendship involves trust. When deeply wounded, we choose not to trust so as to protect our hearts. We resist being vulnerable so that we are not hurt again. Imagined control over our environment seems safer than trust. However, control leads us deeper into perfectionism, whereas trust leads to healing. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)
Trust and caution go together as Proverbs 12:26 indicates. Find safe people to trust. They will encourage your faith and healing. Safe people love & respect others and guard others’ dignity. Safe people are, for the most part, gentle, forgiving and non-judgmental. Truthfully, we will not find perfect people to trust this side of Heaven. Yet, we apply discernment and grace as we learn to trust in relationships.
Sometimes on our journey, no one seems safe. We may have learned not to trust, and perceptions get skewed. We can see lack of trustworthiness in others. We need to learn to trust. Take small risks. See who is fairly trustworthy.
Remember, safe people speak truth in love. We may feel hurt at times by their honesty. This doesn’t mean they aren’t safe, because sometimes, honestly, we need to be confronted and the truth can hurt. We need to learn humility in the process. Here is a guide: Criticism hurts without regard for others’ hearts and dignity while critique seeks to benefit and regards others’ hearts and dignity.
As a caution, when we cling to anyone, except Jesus, we make ourselves unsafe. Also, we give them too much power. This makes them unsafe for us. We need to become dependent on Jesus alone. Hold on to safe people loosely. Having healthy connections with others in mutually loving and respectful relationships will help you to let go of shame and self-hatred.
Finding safe people, becoming a safe person,
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Bringing grace and truth to the downcast; reflecting the light we have received so that others can better see. Prayers needed.