I was raised on a ranch where my closest neighbors were miles away. Basically we had no neighbors. Similarly my parents liked this isolation. They like being separated from others and having lots of nature surrounding them. Similarly my parents always seemed to have a certain amount of mistrust of outsiders. If you are part of the family then that’s family. But outside the family, you are an outsider. There was always this mentality of “we take care of our own.” Due to many bad experiences and traumatic events I myself developed trust issues. I have been told by more than one individual that when they first meet me they thought I hated them. I will not lie, I tend to be very cautious, carful and suspicious of people I do not know. Particularly men. Similarly it takes a lot of work for me to trust people. Similarly you can loss my trust very quickly. I have had to come to terms with these innate reactions within myself. The reactions are often subconscious. I am many times not even aware of them but over the years I have tried to be more in tune with this part of myself.
What I have had to learn over the years is that love should always trump my mistrust and suspicions. Just because I am suspicious of someone does not mean I do not show them respect. Just because I doubt someone does not mean I do not listen to what they have to say. Just because my innate instinct tells me be carful with this person it does not mean I do no treat them with love and kindness. For who knows maybe they are just as mistrustful and suspicious of me. We all have our own trust issues.
My point is that we humans all have trust issues. For let’s be honest no human is completely trustworthy. Similarly we all have certain people we find it challenging to trust. But despite our suspicions and trust issues we as Christians should always act with love, respect and kindness. One way we can do this is by practicing good hospitality. By welcoming outsiders into your home, serving them and practicing good hospitality you can love others. You do not have to trust someone completely to be hospitable toward them. I like to think that trust is earned but we can choose to love regardless of our feelings of trust. When we as christians practice this our love will earn people’s trust. What better way to show someone you are trustworthy then to pour an endless amount of love on them. Amen
“To the angel of the church in Ephesus write: These are the words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand and walks among the seven golden lampstands. I know your deeds, your hard work and your perseverance. I know that you cannot tolerate wicked people, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false. You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary. Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first. Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place. But you have this in your favor: You hate the practices of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who is victorious,I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.” Revelations 2:1-7