WE ARRIVE in the world with child-like innocence, trusting anyone and everyone.
It’s one of the best childhood traits, an untainted trust meter.
At three, four or five everyone is a potential friend.
However, as we grow up and experience the ‘real world’ we soon learn is not the case.
We increasingly realise this type of naivety makes us vulnerable to being hurt.
Often the lesson is telling, coming in the form of a sledgehammer.
Life soon delivers a few blows to awaken a shocking fact not everybody has our back.
As we grow older the brutal truth gets clarified – handing out trust ‘willy-nilly’ is quite dangerous.
It’s always a cruel blow when we find that trust has been betrayed.
We can now see many people don’t have our best interests at heart.
Discovering the confidential information we divulged to someone we thought of as a ‘good person’ ends up being used against us can deliver a wound that cuts deep.
It’s a rude awakening.
An old song comes to mind from school: nobody likes me, everybody hates me, I’m going to eat some worms.
Although not with us at birth, cynicism quickly becomes a close friend as we learn to retreat into self-preservation mode.
We begin hiding.
Afterwards, one of the biggest life wonders becomes the question of whether we’ll ever find someone to trust.
Is there anyone on the planet who is worthy, anyone at all?
The reality is that such people are very few and far between.
Finding another human to trust is surprisingly problematic.
When the God-man walked the earth however, it’s apparent that Jesus was not shocked by the fickleness of people.
There were no surprises when people turned on Him.
Moreover, Christ got let down a ton, so He’s well qualified to have an opinion.
His war stories probably have most of us covered.
In the betrayal space, Jesus had ample experience.
Of the interaction Jesus had with others, the gospel writers record: “Jesus would not entrust Himself to them, for He knew all people” (John 2).
Jesus had foresight; He knew in advance that life in community was fraught with danger.
He knew that people would be unreliable.
Friendship fails were imminent.
Evidently, He avoided entrusting Himself to them.
In case you’re surmising the purpose of this article is to re-enforce the value of your hide out, that’s not the point.
Rather, it’s to convey the profound difference between showing trust in someone, let’s say to perform a certain task, and then entrusting myself to them.
Can you detect the contrast, between trust and entrust — trusting is cool, entrusting not.
The example of Jesus calls us out of pessimism into a life of vulnerability, and yes, trust.
But never to place our emotional wellbeing in human hands.
That’s reserved for the One whose worthy of that sacred space: a living, loving God.
Only there do we entrust ourselves.
New Life Baptist Church.