We both stood there on the edge looking down. The sun was out and it was hot. Not just the sort of hot it gets in the summer, but really sweaty, scorching hot. We were playing in the water and noticed the large cliff above us.  We looked at each other and shouted “first one to the top is king of the mountain”. We raced to be the first one to the top. I got their first and only with a few seconds to spare as my friend jumped up on his last step.  Standing there with beads of sweat pouring down us, we marveled at the view, we could see the entire countryside. “Are you scared”? I asked as we both looked down. “No, not at all, I’m not afraid, I can do it” was his assured response. He stepped forward, looked down and I wondered is he really going to do this. We both just stood their silent as I could tell he was trying to talk himself into jumping down below. Come on man, just do it. I stepped closer to the edge and now saw what he saw. An enormous span divided the water and the ground beneath our feet. I was scared and wanted to back down, but I wasn’t about to do that in front of my friend. We both just stood there looking and not really saying anything. Somehow I managed to get the words out of my mouth and still to this day I don’t know what it was that made me say them. “Do you trust me?” I asked. He said, “Yes”. I reached over and grabbed his hand; we counted 1, 2, 3. The next moment all we could feel was the wind against our skin. We were plummeting down into the water and suddenly the cold water was enveloping us. We shot out of the water screaming and throwing our arms in the air. We had gone to the top, jumped and were still alive.

Ever had any experiences like that? I am sure at some point in your life you have been right there looking over the ledge, scared to back out, but not really wanting to jump into the water either. Wishing someone was there to give you a hand, reach out to you and say, “Do you trust me? I am here to help get your through this.” As a kid growing up out in the countryside in  Montana I am very familiar with this.  I faced challenges which included jumping from something high, jumping our bikes and walking out on river covered in ice. The unspoken rule was to never let on you were scared. Admitting you were scared or wanted help made you look weak. Many times I was scared and it would take some time to talk myself into going for it. I am glad that I did, because I think that it helped me develop some self-confidence.

Psalm 25:1-3 – To you, O LORD; I lift up my soul; in you I trust, O my God. Do not let me be put to shame, nor let my enemies triumph over me. No one whose hope is in you will ever be put to shame, but they will be put to shame who are treacherous without excuse.

I have always been the person people felt they could confide in. Folks would come up to me and say, “Can I tell you something?” “You have to promise not to say a word.” “Ok” was my response and I would listen to what they had to say and keep it to myself. Through the years I have heard many stories expressing inner hurts, pains, joys and happiness because people felt like they could trust me with what they shared. Not being a perfect person there have been occasions I blew it and shared information I shouldn’t have.  Most of the information is locked inside of me and will go with me to my grave.

Trust is not an easy thing and as someone who has survived being molested, I trusted very few people.  I was molested by 2 older male cousins and this fed into my distrust of men altogether.  I believed all guys would do this to me or that somehow something sexually inappropriate would happen between us. I grew up suspicious of other men, thinking they were either out to hurt me or just plain jerks. It wasn’t until I was in college things started to change.  It was at this point I met my best friend Lenny; he was the first guy who ever showed a genuine interest in me and helped me start to believe he was someone I could trust. Through hanging out and spending a lot of time together I was finally able to move past my distrust of other guys.

Now looking back there have been some amazing men who have invested in my life and continued to pour themselves into mine.  In experiencing this it has allowed me to develop safe-trusting relationships with not only these men but with a multitude of other men.  Having the ability to spend time building a relationship with another guy and allowing him to share about his life, means you have to be trustworthy. It means when he bears his sole, the things he has shared with you aren’t used against him and that you will protect his integrity no matter what. You value that man as much as you value your own life and in helping him you build a relationship built on solid trust. As men begin to get really involved in other men’s lives and get real they need the trust to be there.

Proverbs 11:13Whoever goes about slandering reveals secrets, but he who is trustworthy in spirit keeps a thing covered.

When it comes to my kids I am more like a mother bear than my wife. My 6 kids are absolutely the most valuable things in my life. You will not be a part of my life or my kid’s lives if I don’t trust you. If I have any doubts about you with my kids I will not take the risk. My kids know this about me and know me well enough that they never have to question if I have their back or not. I am my kid’s biggest supporter and advocate. I am open and honest and heart to hear conversations with them so that they know they can trust me to tell me whatever is going on and I will still love and support them through it all.

Being able to trust another person is a big deal. Are you really willing to hand your children over to this person and trust they have your children’s best interest at heart. That’s a question many parents struggle with in many different capacities. It’s a tough one and often times we are left trusting God to protect our child. It’s not the best part of parenting. There have been many times I have not wanted to let my kids go and do something, but they really wanted to and so in trusting they would make good choices I let them go knowing God is protecting them. Man, I am so thankful when they return to me. I often reflect back on Psalm 56:3Whenever I am afraid I will trust in You and Proverbs 29:25Whoever trusts in the Lord shall be safe. They help me remember who is really in control and time after time God has proven he is far better than I am.

Being a person who is trustworthy means you have demonstrated something pretty cool. For me it means that I trust you enough to hand my most valuable possessions over to you and you will care for it just as I would and return it to me with no harm done. As a man I want my family, friends and others to see me and say, I a trustworthy person. I have seen and know that I can trust him no matter what happens. He has proven time and time again that you can trust him.

When it comes to being trustworthy, how do you rate yourself?

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