July 10th, 2004


Loving by not trusting

Watched Spider-Man 2 again at the Cinerama with friends. Bought a new spice rack. That's all there's been to this day other than random crappy feelings. God is so good, yet I've refused to enjoy Him as deeply and richly as He offers Himself to me.

Had a bit of an epiphany earlier, though, and maybe it'll make life a bit easier. Realizing that my expectations of people (and myself) are insanely high. Before I'd have said I have a problem trusting people, but that's not the kicker at all. My problem is more along the lines of wanting to trust and being failed.

People are wired differently, and I want to try to look past the judgments I often make on that basis. We all lie to some extent, so that's a given across the board. But besides the outright lies, perhaps we have different senses of what truth means. Sometimes people simply don't mean what they say, and at least as often, they do mean it, but only in that moment—the truth of their words is perishable and spoils after some kind of expiration date, which may be only minutes later. That's different from a lie, and different from me, but I'm not sure it's fair to say it's dishonest. For this reason, perhaps the more loving thing is not to trust the way I've been trying to, because it holds others to a standard they never agreed to.

Seems odd to conclude that a better way to relate with others is to trust them less, but it makes sense the more I think about it. The way I'm created, I'll find it easier to rest in the presence of people who have more of a tendency to mean what they say in a steadfast fashion. Yet I don't have to cut off the rest of the world—it's just more work, and wiser for me to remain guarded in those relationships.

I tend to be afraid of not taking people seriously enough, but I may honor some of them more by not taking them so seriously at all, and when I don't have the energy to wade through it, to simply retreat for a time rather than expressing my frustration. It's worth a shot.
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