Ac­cep­tance fos­ters trust and re­la­tion­ship

The Sunday Guardian - - World - By Rev. Dr. Richard How­ell

Raj knew he was a child of God. Call­ing upon God as Father, who loves and cares, em­pow­ered his life and took away all fear. As the word of God prom­ises, “For you did not re­ceive a spirit of slav­ery that re­turns you to fear, but you re­ceived the Spirit of son­ship, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father. The Spirit Him­self tes­ti­fies with our spirit that we are God’s chil­dren” (Ro­mans 8: 15-16). When men­tal truth be­came an ex­pe­ri­en­tial re­al­ity Raj knew God in Christ both knows him and loves him.

Ac­cep­tance is the foun­da­tion on which Raj built safe and growth in­duc­ing re­la­tion­ships, with God and peo­ple. The process of our trans­for­ma­tion into the like­ness of Christ is based on the as­sur­ance that we are known and loved.

Isn’t it true that some peo­ple like us be­cause they don’t know us; while some know us, and there­fore don’t like us? Re­la­tion­ships de­velop when both knowl­edge and love are present. Raj had come to know God knows him by name and loves him with a sac­ri­fi­cial love! How mar­vel­lous to know that the Creator of this beau­ti­ful uni­verse loves us and ac­cepts us the way we are. Ac­cep­tance bridges this gap be­tween be­ing known and be­ing loved. It is lib­er­at­ing to re­al­ize that be­ing known doesn’t dam­age a re­la­tion­ship, but in fact for­ti­fies it. When peo­ple are in an ac­cept­ing en­vi­ron­ment, they can stop pre­tend­ing to be some­one they aren’t; they can rest in the re­la­tion­ship. All our masks fall down when we rest in the as­sur­ance of be­ing loved. Gen­uine re­la­tion­ships bring about much needed in­ner heal­ing in our emo­tional life.

This is what trust is about. Ac­cept­ing re­la­tion­ships pro­vide the needed en­vi­ron­ment to be our true self with all our idio­syn­cra­sies. We don’t have to re­vise ev­ery word and step on eggshells to stay hap­pily con­nected. We can be care­free in how we talk about our­selves; we can be who we are.

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