It’s so important to find a few people that you can trust with your true self. Men, you need to find just a few men who will know you and protect your heart.
I had a profound experience of that when I trusted a teammate and talked to him about watching porn. I confided that I didn’t even understand why I did it. It was so freeing when he didn’t judge me.
I told him that it started when I blew a game in Houston a few nights before. I gave up a homer to lose the game. I joked that a Houston homer is a cheap homer. It counts, kind of, but it’s Houston. You only have to hit the ball 215 feet. You should only get half a homer if you hit a homer there!
It was just a joke. The guy hit the ball. I’m the one that lost the game.
After giving up the game, I went back to the hotel, mad at myself. I was lying there and I got bored. And I just did it. My wife’s beautiful and I love her so I couldn’t understand why I did it.
So there I was, sharing my shame and frustration with my teammate, and we talked all the way through an entire Cincinnati rain delay. I’m sure there were other guys that walked into the lounge while we were talking. I didn’t see them, but I’m pretty sure they did a U-turn when they heard this conversation!
But for me, to have someone to talk to who would listen to me and dialogue with me and help me work it through was unbelievable. In the course of that conversation, the amount of trust I had with that man was unbelievable. It was awesome. Why? Because I could reveal some of my weakness without shame. Without being scared. Without being judged.
Without someone telling me, “Oh man, you know, I’m going to pray for you.” Sometimes that feels like a brush-off. Not this time. This time, somebody listened.
For the first time, I felt that I didn’t have to act holier-than-thou. I was the chapel leader, but I didn’t have to put on an act that seemed appropriate to the position. I didn’t have to be that guy that writes books, talks about Jesus, and speaks in churches. For the first time, I felt like I could actually reveal that I was weak, and it was okay.
It freed me. That night, I experienced exactly what I had been learning, which is that you need to trust other people with you. If you do not trust somebody with who you really are, you will never mature. Not ever.
By maturity, I’m not talking about a 15-year-old boy becoming a man. I’m not talking about getting gray hair. I’m not talking about being 70 years old.
I’m talking about maturing as a human being. I’m talking about our souls maturing. I’m talking about our spirits maturing because we trust somebody with our true selves.
If you don’t trust somebody, if you hide your weakness and shame, then you will not mature. If you have an area of weakness and are too afraid to tell somebody about it, that weakness will keep you immature.
It will get worse. It will hurt you. It will cause a lot of issues in your life. It can crush you.
The solution is trust. More on this next time.