Lately, I’ve been thinking about how skeptical I can be. I want to trust others but if I’m honest with myself, I still live my life with a tendency to ‘err on the side of guarded. I will accept others long before I fully trust them. You have to earn trust in my book. I don’t like being deceived.
I guess this somewhat guarded way of living comes from having to learn the hard way that when red flags go up…you don’t dismiss them. Sometimes, the red flag means something. Other times, it just means I’m being hyper-sensitive. Either way, I think it’s my responsibility to find out why it’s waving.
However, when I discover I’m just being overly sensitive, I tend to kick myself and say things like “Eileen, why can’t you just be more trusting? Why is your initial thought so often…is this a scam? Why can’t your initial thought be thinking the best of people? Why isn’t it your hearts tendency to think sincere. Why do you tend to look for the scam?”
Deception is one of the factors that contributed to the downfall of my first marriage. There were many factors but deception was a biggie. Because of this, I tend to be more on the look out for scams than maybe the average Joe. This can be a good thing and a bad thing. And I guess I spend quite a bit of my life trying to find the balance between healthy skepticism and unhealthy skepticism.
I shake my head at some of the stories people share on Facebook. Folks, in general, if the story seems truly unbelievable…it probably is. My one piece of advice: get in the practice of checking Google or Snopes before re-positng. My favorite (recent) bogus story someone shared was the one announcing that the missing Malaysia flight had been found. It had been nearly two weeks and in my news feed I see a picture of a plane in the water with all the passengers standing on the wing of the plane. Really?
Like I said, I think accepting others is the first and necessary step to any relationship. But, trust only comes when you look at the track record of the one you want to trust. And, once that trust is broken, it’s no wonder that it’s a difficult journey to establish it again. When I think about my relationship with Christ, I realize how the process played out very much the same way. When I first accepted Christ into my life, there was a part of me that held back my love and devotion for Him. But, over the years, the more I’ve been willing to let go, to be vulnerable, and to give Him the pieces of my life, the more He’s proven to me that I can fully trust Him. His track record is impeccable.
How are you with trust? Is it hard or easy for you?