Courageous Vulnerability

Hey People!!! It’s been a while!

WOW! I didn’t in any way plan to be away for this long. I thought that I would still be able to write to you every other week amidst the other projects I had running, but alas, here I am. My time away has been filled with an extraordinary and immersive learning experience which I would discuss later and venturing into new projects that the Father impressed on my heart. I’m super excited about what is to come!

It is truly not so easy to start again after you’ve stopped writing for a while. It takes utmost discipline to build back a routine after you’ve stopped for a while. I have had this title in my head and heart for many weeks, but I have been procrastinating and putting out making time to write for the ‘right time’. As we already know, the ‘right time’ is a myth. The time is right once you commit to the process and do the work without overthinking or procrastinating. Friend, if there’s any task you’ve been putting out for so long in anticipation of the ‘right time’; I’m here to announce to you that the right time is here! The right time is right now! Now, is a perfect time. You have my permission and blessing to please stop reading and get to work! Call that friend, start that blog, register that business, schedule that therapy session, try out that new recipe, and so on. Be like today’s me and go for it.

Let’s open today’s conversation on “courageous vulnerability”.

When these words came to my heart, I tinkered with them in search of a coinage that would make it catchy. After much tinkering, I settled for leaving it as it is. Imagine my surprise, to see that there is a whole body of work around the subject matter. Anyway, as always, I write to you from my heart.

I know these two words seating side by side, sound like an oxymoron because we believe that words like courage depict strength, while vulnerability depicts weakness. However, placed side by side this term describes ‘the strength and bravery displayed in intentionally exposing your weakness’.

I know this may sound weird to some of us who are so used to presenting an indefatigable picture. You know the perfect rock of a person without flaws or weak moments; the one who is ever together, ever sure, ever confident, ever so precisely planned, primed, and timed. I think that we may all know one person whom we would categorize as such. For those of you reading this and thinking I’m the friend you would describe as such, I’m so glad to announce to you that I am not that person. I do not have everything figured out or timed, and I do show weakness. You probably think so, because you haven’t seen the vulnerable side of me, but believe me, she exists within my safe places, and quite often too!

The old me would never have admitted that as it gave me a sense of superiority to be perceived in this light. It buffered my ego and made me feel super cool. I reckon some of us may be able to relate to this. I’m thankful that I’m longer that person, and that I live more aligned with God’s will for our lives as seen in Galatians 6:2 (AMP), “Carry one another’s burdens and in this way, you will fulfil the requirements of the law of Christ [that is, the law of Christian love]”.

If, on the other hand, you are truly indefatigable, I salute you! I commend your tenacity, resilience, and strength. I salute your ability to stretch, never crack under pressure, admit weakness, and bear the burdens for other people. However, I encourage you to find safe spaces where you can let down your burdens – where you can be truly vulnerable; rant without judgement and express yourself without the most eloquent words, express your exhaustion without the need to justify it with your accolades, and where you can expose your uncertainties, fears, doubts, and weaknesses in a wholesome way.

I can hear someone asking “why? what’s the point? I have it all covered so why do I need to share my life with others?” To that person, believe me when I tell you that it is needful having been at both sides of the divide.

Having ‘safe spaces’ in your relationships provides you with a community of unadulterated love, devoid of judgement where you can be strengthened, grow, and thrive. These relationships are not designed to be ‘dumping grounds’ where individuals come and throw their pain and weakness; rather they are wholesome mutually beneficial relationships where parties share their successes; learn, have fun, and grow together; give and receive objective feedback, and leverage one another’s strengths and successes while still bearing each other’s burdens with utmost love and respect. Such relationships take time, patience, trust, wisdom, and grace to build, and of course come at a cost.

The cost of such unique relationships is a commitment to the individuals or group, a commitment to truth and love, a commitment to believe the best of one another, and to discard pride and the need to appear strong. It takes intentional and purposeful communication, and a surrendered heart.

I know someone may be reading this, and thinking, “being vulnerable is a risk”. I know you may have heard stories of people who have been scarred by loved ones whom they once confided in and later turned out to betray their confidence, expose their flaws, judge them based on weak moments, and generally break their trust. Or perhaps you have even had such an experience. If you have, my heart goes out to you as I cannot imagine the pain and regret you must have felt or even still feel.

Despite these stories or experiences, today I want to encourage you to intentionally and prayerfully seek out and cultivate safe spaces for vulnerability in your life. Have circle(s) of friendships where you can show ‘weakness’ devoid of judgement, and access strength, wisdom, love, and grace. It truly does take courage, grit, and grace to be this vulnerable; and if you have such, I commend you. Please feel free to share your positive stories of courageous vulnerability in the comments.

As always,

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4 Responses

  1. I enjoyed reading. We truly need those safe spaces. We must trust God to help us identify and cultivate relationships because all God will do for us, he will do through yielded men.

  2. I have missed the usual Sunday tonic of the growing together with CI. This is particularly refreshing. I should start doing!

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