The Truth about Trust (part one)

Pretty audacious, right?

How can I claim to know how you trust? And if, by some miracle I do, how can I assert that you misunderstand how you trust people? The way you trust is other than the way you believe you do?

Scripture says the heart is deceitfully wicked, who can know it? [Jer 17:9] Said more contemporarily: We’re good at fooling ourselves.

trust 1So with trust.

Because trust is central to relationships, misunderstanding how we trust causes much mischief…especially when trust’s been broken.

Let me explain.

Most believe that, as largely rational beings, we evaluate the trustworthiness of those with whom we relate. We assess their veracity, and, finding it substantial, we trust them. If we discover them dishonest, mercurial, deceptive, or deceitful we withhold trust.

Right?

And when someone we trust betrays that trust, it’s game over!

“I don’t trust you. And I won’t.” (Here’s where the mischief arises.) “Not ‘til you earn my trust again.”

The first falsehood about trust is that trust is earned.

It isn’t.

Trust is bestowed.

Think about it.

doctor 1You see your doctor, maybe recommended by a friend, or based on an online review, or because she’s connected to a reputable medical group. Waiting, as we always do, you don’t suspect the framed diploma on the wall is a forgery do you? The nurse who enters, takes your BP and administers your flu shot could be an impostor…a fraud in a uniform with a stethoscope who walked in off the street.

No. You trust that your Doctor is who she’s portrayed to be, that this is her nurse.

You bestow trust.

If you’re the suspicious type, you make small talk about your Doc’s Alma Mater: “How’d you like New Haven when you were there?” Easily satisfied, you move on.

Trust bestowed.

del taco 1Driving through DelTaco, you don’t ask the voice requesting your order: “Are you a certified food hander? What are your credentials?” You order a breakfast burrito and drive to the window.

Trust bestowed.

You say they’ve done nothing to undermine your trust… so you trust them. But honestly, it’s impossible to know a person is completely trustworthy.

After all, we’re human.

Human = limited…imperfect…flawed.

I can have the best intentions to keep my promise to you, respond to a pressing need that’s just arisen, and to not ‘drop the ball’ on any of a dozen other commitments I have in play at the same moment in time: Edit manuscript. Invoice coaching clients. Submit expense reports. Call potential participants for June seminar. Email prayer partners. Invest in marriage.

If I’m honest, I’m not all that trustworthy.

So, why do people trust me?

‘Cause, it’s bestowed, not earned.

 

 

 

The Truth about Trust part one.docx

KRK 5/24/2015