Advent 2016: Vulnerability

Readings: Psalm 42; Ezekiel 47:1-12; Jude 17-25

Yesterday I had a couple hard conversation. My goal was to be understood…to be seen and heard…to be really clear about where I stand on the day to day going on around me. To do so involved being vulnerable. Really open and available to the men I was sharing with.

VULNERABILITY is not a weakness, a passing indisposition, or something we can arrange to do without, vulnerability is not a choice, vulnerability is the underlying, ever present and abiding under-current of our natural state. (David Whyte in Consolations)

I’d been thinking about this for days. I’d discussed it with two friends who I trust. I knew my goal. I knew what I needed to say. I knew that I had to leave my expectations at the door.

The only choice we have as we mature is how we inhabit our vulnerability, how we become larger and more courageous and more compassionate through our intimacy with disappearance, our choice is to inhabit vulnerability as generous citizens of loss, robustly and fully, or conversely, as misers and complainers, reluctant, and fearful, always at the gates of existence, but never bravely and completely attempting to enter, never wanting to risk ourselves, never walking fully through the door. (David Whyte in Consolations)

Yesterday was worth the risk.

Not every vulnerability is met with kindness or return of openness. We won’t always walk away feeling safe. It will almost always take courage to be willing to take a chance on other humans that we aren’t certain will respond the way our closest friends do.

Even so…God calls us to it and God brings us through it:

Now all glory to God, who is able to keep you from falling away and will bring you with great joy into his glorious presence without a single fault. All glory to him who alone is God, our Savior through Jesus Christ our Lord. All glory, majesty, power, and authority are his before all time, and in the present, and beyond all time! Amen. (Jude 24-25)

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