Posts Tagged ‘trust’

Parents are ‘the architects of the family’; they are in a position and have the power to reshape the atmosphere and reestablish the trust.” (Clinebell quoted in Peterson, p 49)

Peterson asks “What kind of trust relationship do you have with God? Do you trust Him? Does He trust you? How do you show your trust for Him? How does He treat you?” Those are great questions, but unless our answers are informed by Scripture revealing that nature and character of God, our answers may only be reinforcing bad theology.

Here’s a hint about God’s modus operandi: Who did He trust with evangelizing the world…with making disciples of all nations? Here are a few more: Who did God trust with leading his people out of Egypt? With rescuing the spies in Jericho? With being the first King of Israel?

We are both teachers and learners of trust – as disciples we are learners, as parents we are teachers. And we teach best when we teach what we have experienced from our Heavenly Father, not from our environment in this broken and sinful world. Do you remember what it was like at the beginning….Were you trustworthy? I may not know you well reader, but I am confident of the answer. You were no more trustworthy than I….and I was a sinner. “God shows His love for us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8)

Peterson claims that in “matters that are at the very core of our existence, we learn through demonstration, by having truth done to and for us. The One who is the very embodiment of Truth revealed what we could not know on our own. That Truth is self-sacrificial love. And so “we love because he first loved us.” (I John 4:19)

But what happens if we try to play it safe…if we choose not to risk….not to love…not to trust? According to Peterson, “if parents refuse to trust until their children prove that they are worthy of being trusted, trust will simply not develop.” (p. 50)

Mom and Dad, friend of teens…those kids you and I love will have a shot at learning to receive the love and trust of God as we model it for them. How does that square with good stewardship? I think we need someone to articulate a good theology of risk….anyone up for it? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

(This post is inspired by chapter 6 of Like Dew Your Youth: Growing Up With Your Teenager by Eugene Peterson. Get a copy of this great little book and check back each Thursday for the next 7 weeks to become part of the discussion).

To be trusted is a greater compliment than being loved.” George MacDonald.

It’s almost too simple. We learn caring by being cared for. We learn to trust by being trusted. And to teach others, we need to extend trust and care to them.

This creates a real bind, doesn’t it? Many of us have been around long enough to put great stock in sayings like “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me” or to “know” from experience that a person who lets you down once will do it again…and again…and again. We want people to earn our trust, to show us beyond risk that they are worthy of whatever we give to them.

But adolescence is a time of great insecurity. Teens are learning to make decisions. The learning curve is steep. And the result is not always trustworthy behavior, but inconsistency and greater insecurity.

Peterson uses the image of a young child learning to walk. The parents are cheerleaders, encouraging risk and overlooking failure as they celebrate the success that will be. Is that a good image for teaching adolescents to be trustworthy? Why or why not?

Who trusted you? Had you earned it…or was it a gift you grew into?

(This post is inspired by chapter 6 of Like Dew Your Youth: Growing Up With Your Teenager by Eugene Peterson. Get a copy of this great little book and check back each Thursday for the next 7 weeks to become part of the discussion).