To Trust and be trusted.
These are good things.
Recently, I was feeling encouraged and thankful for the level of trust that we have established with our guests at Next Door.
In particular, the subject of trust came to me as I was thinking about Chris*, the coming winter and Chris’ home – a tent in the woods on the outskirts of Aldershot.
As I was thinking about him I wondered, how would I know if something happened? There are some cold nights ahead and, if after a few cold days, Chris no longer drops in for a hot meal, I want to know where to go looking for him.
But, the subject of trust came to mind. I imagine when you are homeless, have been in and out of shelters and rooming houses and are now living illegally in the woods, it’s hard to know whom to trust. Would Chris trust me enough to show me where he lives? Would he allow me to drive him to the edge of Aldershot, and walk that lonely path with him into the woods, to the spot he calls home?
I wasn’t sure.
As it turned out, this past Monday night, the opportunity to ask him just that question came naturally to our conversation. To my surprise, in a roundabout way, Chris actually broached the subject. You see, over supper he asked me for my business card, explaining that his mental health is suffering and he wants to be able to let us know at Next Door where he is in the event he ends up in the hospital.
He trusts us enough to be his community, the ones he checks in with. From there, it was natural for me to ask what was on my heart. We would love to be the community you check in with, but, can we check in on you if we don’t see or hear from you? Can we come look for you?
Chris pondered my question and, after a bit of thought, said yes.
He trusts us enough to let us in.
It’s not unusual for us to reflect on the things we take for granted. Our freedom, our family, our health.
Perhaps trust is one of those things. In a moment of reflection, it is worth asking who are the people in your life that trust you and who do you trust?
In answering that question, we experience the humility of knowing that, as imperfect as we are, as poor as we may do in relationships, people trust us.
And, freedom is found when we take the risk to trust others.
To trust and be trusted.
These are good things.
* This is, of course a pseudonym. I hate using pseudonyms simply because they never feel right! I wanted to call him Jesus because Jesus understands what it means to be homeless. But, of course, that also felt funny. So, he is Chris, short for Christopher meaning, he who bears Christ.