In a previous post I talked about how we have to be willing to initiate transparency. Sharing our deeper hurts or struggles can be risky, but it’s the bedrock for a meaningful relationship.
While doing work in the prison I didn’t ask anyone what they did wrong to get incarcerated, instead I shared my own past failures that would have or should have landed me a seat next to theirs.
Transparency makes us vulnerable and sometimes others don't reciprocate. I’ve had times when others used what I shared with them against me, but as I stated before, who was the loser?
If I am willing to take the risk first, then I open the door to an honest exchange in a safe environment….This is where Trust is built. What could be more important?
In order to maintain trust we have to be able to keep what was told to us to ourselves, and we have to be able to separate the sin from the sinner. We all have failed, so we’re not here to judge, we’re here to help.
Can I keep a secret? I have to be able to keep to myself what someone trusts me with.
Exception: IF that person is planning to continue in destructive behavior, or if they’re planning to do something harmful in the future, they need to be warned UPFRONT that my silence will only aide in their sickness, and that is where my line is drawn. All too often silence is taken for approval, so confront your friend in love.
Providing someone with the choice to turn away from their harmful, selfish, destructive, sinful behavior is essential to accountability. When someone asks me to be an accountability partner my first response is not “yes” or “no” instead it’s “How?” Establishing this on the front end helps us to clearly define our purpose; which is to encourage one another in truth.