“Do to others as you would have them do to you.”
—Luke 6:31 (NRSV)
The basic science of human interaction is a complicated art. It seems simple but there are many barriers that get in the way. There are barriers within us, as there are barriers within the other person. Some barriers are situational, whilst other barriers we struggle with all our lives.
But gaining a rapport, establishing a moment of friendly intimacy, is not that difficult.
If we are able to achieve one moment of genuine connection with another person, we are able to achieve many of these. It all depends on how vulnerable we are in their presence, and how vulnerable they allow themselves to be in ours.
Opening up through Being Vulnerable
It is a big misnomer that we are weak if we show vulnerability. No, if we are intentionally vulnerable we show admirable strength. And we are not vulnerable just for the sake of it, we are vulnerable to invite others’ vulnerability—we trust them with our vulnerability so they might trust us with theirs.
This is the only way an intimate relationship may be formed. And let’s just get this straight; Jesus desired that we would be willing and available for others, appreciating that we often want others willing and available for us.
The issue of vulnerability is an important one. We cannot expect somebody else to be vulnerable—to be available to be in effective relationship—unless we model the behaviour. When we do to others what we wish them to do to us, it starts from us.
And we have to understand that being vulnerable won’t be repaid in kind all the time or even most of the time. But we need to be willing to show the strength of character in the will to relate. We cannot turn such a thing on and off. It needs to be part of our basic modus operandi in all our interactions—besides where it would be openly abused.
Achieving ‘a Moment’
A moment, in this speak, is a moment that is transformed by the power of God; where a momentary bond between two people is achieved through common trust and respect. Upon such a moment we note the Presence of God.
Achieving a moment such as this goes beyond all cultural norms and enters the realm of Divinity. We go from a state of many social fears into a state of calm for the holiness in such a moment. God is there in our midst, inside and between both the protagonists. Only one of these moments is needed and the rapport between these two individuals is solidified.
The highest of human experience is the knowledge of God in relationship with another person. When we not only know God, alone, but now in the company of another, our enjoyment of God is doubled.
The power of the transformed life is the ability to confidently and vulnerably share a moment with another person. When we can be open and honest we are safe to be with. People love to interact with people who are safe to be with. Be safe to be with.
© 2012 S. J. Wickham.