Take the Risk
Theme of the Week: Get Real: The Key to Genuine Friendship
Thursday, May 22, 2014
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Key Bible Verses: Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10)
Dig Deeper: Ecclesiastes 4:7-12
Many believe that being vulnerable, which is a form of transparency and being real, is foolish and ill-advised. This is because they see vulnerability as a weakness that leaves them open to attack. But having the courage to choose to be vulnerable takes strength.
Many times, exposing yourself to the possibility of harm is the very way you expose yourself to the possibility of receiving the greatest love, acceptance, and level of friendship you can know. The risk is great, but the reward is greater.
To have real friendships, we cannot play offense and defense at the same time. Unless we become vulnerable, we will not be able to enjoy fulfilling interactions with others. Unless we tear down our walls of self-protection, we will never experience the joy of genuine friendship.
Building fortresses around our hearts will certainly protect us from being wounded, disappointed, or betrayed, but it will also prevent us from ever giving or receiving in relationships—and that would be miserable. If we want to live instead of simply exist, we must be vulnerable. Once we are able to become vulnerable, we position ourselves to enjoy deep and real friendship.
—Van Moody in The People Factor
My Response: What might happen if I let my defenses down and had an honest, risk-taking conversation with a close friend? What might be the rewards of doing so?
Thought to Apply: To share your weakness is to make yourself vulnerable; to make yourself vulnerable is to show your strength.—Criss Jami (poet)
Adapted from The People Factor by Van Moody (Thomas Nelson, 2014) by permission. All rights reserved by the copyright holder and/or the publisher. May not be reproduced.
Copyright © 2014 by Christianity Today/Men of Integrity magazine. Click here for reprint information on Men of Integrity.
Prayer for the Week
Heavenly Father, impress upon me the need to have genuine friendships with a few trustworthy Christian guys. Show me how to relate to them man-to-man in ways that foster honesty, build community, and promote personal growth.
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