What role does vulnerability play in our relationship with God? Is it a weakness or a strength? This week Tania compares vulnerability and victimization, and writes about how they connect to our relationship with our Creator. -Editor.
It seems like life pretty consistently asks us to be strong. Stand on your own. Make a something of yourself. Follow your dreams. Do the right thing. Stick to your goals. Live your principles. A lot is expected. And while these more external expectations of strength can seem hard to meet, even more is asked of us. The Lord asks us to be strong: we have to take action in order to allow Him to work in our lives. So with all this strength required, what role does vulnerability play? Lately I have been thinking about vulnerability as both its own kind of strength, and a tool to find strength in a world that defines strength as something else.
Perhaps one of the reasons vulnerability is overlooked is because we sometimes confound being a victim and being vulnerable. Both involve an acknowledgement of weakness, even helplessness. But one says: the world is against me and I can’t do this, while the other says: this is hard for me and I’m going trust you enough to let you see that I’m hurting. I have written before about the incapacitating power of the victim mindset; it’s no good. But vulnerability is something else, something with a power of its own. What is this power, and what is its relationship to strength? How can it help in our relationship with the Lord and with others?
It is first necessary to clearly distinguish victimhood and vulnerability. Perhaps the crucial difference between them is in accepting responsibility for our part in the situation.