I read a quote today that said this: “Trust is like a piece of paper, once it is crumpled up it can never be in its original shape.” No, that symbolic piece of paper will never be the same, but it has the potential to be wholly better than ever. Heres why…
First, I want to be careful not to minimize betrayal at all, it is a serious matter. When we break our trust with someone, it is an epic blow to the relationship. We have hurt them very deeply, and done so without thinking about them, but instead only of ourselves. Inexcusable yes, but not unrecoverable from.
What I would like to offer is another view of a broken trust and what potential lies in the jagged chasm that has been created.
When a trust is broken, there exists an opportunity to heal the wound and be stronger together than you could have ever been before. Truth be told, if we discarded and abandoned everyone in the room who broke someones trust at some point, there would be some lonely furniture sitting there!
We get hurt and in that moment as we begin to process the pain and questions, the other persons motives and our response, stuff starts swirling around like a tornado in our brain…it is a confusing time.
This is where an opportunity can rise from the ashes.
The real beauty of a broken trust restoration is in the humility and repentance of the offender, and the forgiveness and grace given by the offended. This needs to happen in concert with one another to work. I have been on both sides of this equation. Here is what happened in each situation:
- I was betrayed by someone very close to me, the other person decided they didn’t need to be genuinely sorry or work at restoration between us; that relationship has, for the most part ended.
- I betrayed someones trust, then spent months and years working to prove my sincerity and dedication to them. Trust is not only being restored, there is a strength being built that could not exist before the betrayal.
I am not saying, “Hey, run out and break your trust with the someone and it’ll make your relationship better!” Of course not! However, if we extend to others what God has freely given us, great miracles are possible. I prefer to believe for the miraculous when two people are willing to work at restoration.
We are taught to trust the only one who is proven trustworthy in all things, God. Following this teaching in Proverbs will go a long way in helping us avoid trust breaks with each other. I am still learning!
If you want favor with both God and man, and a reputation for good judgment and common sense, then trust the Lord completely; don’t ever trust yourself. In everything you do, put God first, and he will direct you and crown your efforts with success.
Proverbs 3:5-6 Living Bible (TLB)