Rev. Kisseadoo - DEVELOPING TRUST FOR ONE ANOTHER (Part II)
In my first article on “Trust” (Joy Online, posted 6TH Dec. 09), we explored the basis and benefits of trust, and outlined some of the fundamental causes for mistrust among us. I would like us to continue with other important components of the virtue of trust. In previous discussions, the focus was somehow skewed towards marriage, family life, and intimate relationships, but the principles do cover all aspects of our interactions. Distrust and mistrust (with accompanied dishonesty and insincerity) exist in every corner of our communities --- corporations, businesses, churches, evangelistic and mission groups, organizations, committees, boards, markets, stores, farms, law courts, hospitals, clinics, schools, banks, political set-ups, associations, NGO's, and different workplaces. The fact is that when discipline, honesty, transparency, and trust are built in our marriages, homes, and family affairs, we carry that character and spirit outside to relate with everyone else, and conduct all of our affairs in ways that promote trust. Charity will always begin at home, and families will always be the foundation of a nation. Nine out of ten, when people entrusted with money embezzle the funds and mismanage the finances, or steal resources from places, they ultimately carry the stolen money and goods to their homes and family members. In fact, several politicians, heads of institutions or corporations, pastors of churches, evangelists, treasurers and financial secretaries of organizations, business associates etc. who display distrust by lying about the finances entrusted to them, do so primarily because of the desire to favor and impress a girlfriend, boyfriend, wife, husband, child, in-law, close friend, or other family member in one way or another.
The lack of trust centers around the lies we tell or half-truths we put forth regarding other common factors such as lateness to work or to an important meeting, poor preparation or lack of readiness for an assignment, neglect of responsibilities, apathetic attitude, laziness in performing a duty, competition and envy or jealousy etc. Sometimes we habitually lie and cheat for so long that we become immune to the shame and destructive effects of our acts and behavior on others, and care less about trust. In some instances we are deeply driven by the burning desire to satisfy our selfish ambitions, and do not care to scheme and invent every available trick in the book to deceive and outwit the people we are dealing with. That is when people can go to the extent of forging and manipulating names, certificates, permits, exam grades, passports, visas, immigration documents, figures for salaries or purchases, and amounts for reimbursements, or plagiarizing essays and assignments for presentation etc. Politicians and others running for office, or men and women who are bent on marrying a particular person for selfish gains can lie to their teeth with fake promises and incredibly impressive demonstrations.
As I mentioned before, the fear of God is a basic cure for all these problems of lies, dishonesty, and mistrust. If you know God, fear the Lord, and believe that He is keenly watching and recording all that you think, say, and do, and will call you to stand before Him one day to give an account to God Himself after death, then you will practice an awareness of God's Holy Presence everywhere, and do your best to live honestly and be trusted, and quickly repent when you happen to falter and exhibit insincerity at anytime. Respectable people trained in matters of trust, and who have even vowed to be honest leaders or professionals (e.g. medical doctors, nurses, accountants, lawyers, engineers, professors, political leaders, CEO's of corporations, board members, heads of institutions, ministry leaders and pastors etc.), finally betray the trust reposed in them to the shock of everyone. It is sad to mention that many religious devotees, ardent church attendants, and especially some church leaders and men or women of God, can profess God so loudly with their lips and even demonstrate God's anointing upon their lives with signs and wonders or torrential preaching of the truth, but do not show by their practical lives (especially in private) that Jesus is Lord over their lives, and that they really understand God and genuinely fear (reverence) Him. It is time for us to work hard on ourselves, and openly discuss the important aspects of the great virtue of trust, and encourage ourselves to build and establish trust in our societies.
No One Can Trust Someone For You
No matter the teaching, training, counseling, and prayers you receive from people, no one can trust your lover, fiancée, spouse, parent, family member, colleague, neighbor, partner, or friend for you. It is similar to faith and salvation, or feeding and medication, where no one can believe and become saved for you, or eat your food and swallow your medicine for you. No one, for example, can love and be happy or patient for you; you need to do that yourself. Faith, hope, love, feeding, growth, health, maturity, happiness, joy, self-control, and trust are personal matters. You can take inspiration from me, and I could influence you with my loving and joyful or enthusiastic attitude, or influence you with my character of trust, but you need to do things right, and gain good things for yourself. Although people can ask others to be with you or help you to do things, give you something to support you (food, medicine, accommodation etc.), or can offer you recommendations to choose people and things that will benefit you, no one can actually assimilate and trust anyone or anything for you. You have to learn to develop your own trust and confidence in life. You can work with someone or use something and gain satisfying benefits, but you could still do so with constant fear and doubts, no matter the circumstances, unless you make a firm decision to operate in the realm of faith and trust. If after conducting all the necessary tests and analysis you become convinced that someone's recommendation is good, and a particular person is the best answer for your partnership in a particular situation, then you need to open your mind and heart to the one and create some trust to the required degree in order to continue to derive all the expected benefits.
Love, Faith, Agreement, And Trust Go Together
There is no way that you can build trust between the two of you as friends at school, on the job, in partnership for a project or any activity, in ministry, as lovers, in marriage, in a family, or at home with a close person, if you do not develop sincere love in your hearts that looks out for the interests, welfare, rights, and needs of each other. You cannot also sincerely love someone without believing in the person. Neither can you agree with anyone to walk and work together in harmony, without trusting that you will always be faithful to each other and maintain the bond of unity and fundamental principles that hold the relationship together. It does not mean you will walk in uniformity, but you make the necessary compromises for unity in the midst of your differences to arrive on a common ground where you strike mutual agreement for important things that matter most, and work together harmoniously.
CATEGORIES OR KINDS OF TRUST
In my opinion there are variations or kinds of trust, as well as a basis for any kind of trust, depending on the kind of person being trusted, what is involved in the trusting process, and the circumstances surrounding whom and what you are trusting. In other words there should be a reasonable, genuine, and solid basis for trusting, which determines the kind or extent of the trust you exercise, and fits into a particular category of trust.
I have tried to categorize different types and variations of trust in my own way in order to explain my point. I encourage you to use them in discussions, or analyze, and improve upon them for your personal application if necessary. If you use this in any publication or presentation, please be kind and responsible enough to acknowledge the source. I will be glad to get comments from you as well. The categories are: A)
A) Fake Trust
Fake trust is trust that is not real, or is false. Sometimes it is even nonexistent because it faked and demonstrated by someone acting in pretence for a selfish benefit. All forms of insincere, false, and deceptive exhibition of trust come under this category. You need wisdom and great insight to spot fake trust from afar and nib it in the bud very quickly before you blindly embrace it and ultimately allow it to subtly sweep you away with its destructive underneath strong currents. Fake trust has misled people into destructive habits, rape, unplanned pregnancy, unexpected fornication or adultery, heavy financial losses, crumbling of businesses and companies, destruction of marriages and families, derailment of romantic relationships or courtships with attendant emotional trauma, devastation of churches and ministries, destruction of governments and nations, and even death. Fake trust is common, for example, in situations where a person (opportunist) merely wants to gain carnal and romantic benefits from someone and therefore does so in the name of assistance, love, or marriage. The individual therefore pretends that he or she trusts you, and tries to convince you that the one could be trusted as well. People who want monetary or material benefits from you, desire to obtain jobs or appointments and important positions, or crave for promotions plus recognitions from you, can also fake tremendous amounts of trust, and pile truckloads of fake loyalty on you, while they sugarcoat their flattery words with palatability exceeding 10 times the sweetness of sugar, in order for you to repose your precious trust in them.
B) Conditional Trust
Conditional trust is dependent on circumstances or prevailing conditions, and is in twofold: 1) Familiarity Conditional Trust: this is based on special or specific conditions or situations that weigh heavily on the sense of group identity, such as tribe, race, language, school, family relations, family friendships etc. Sometimes the basis is that the people belong to the same entity such as club, organization, association, company, profession, sorority, fraternity, church, evangelistic group, religion, cult, political affiliation, or hierarchy. The knowledge that someone is your schoolmate or classmate, or attended the same institution you attended before, can invoke a spirit of trust in you to some degree. The sense of trust tends to build when you learn that the person you are dealing with belongs to the same country, tribe, or hometown as you do, and especially if he or she speaks your language. Any further revelation of a friendship or relation with any close family member or friend is an extra icing on the trust cake.
2) Satisfaction Conditional Trust: this is conditional trust that is dependent upon the extent to which you are satisfied or pleased with the services offered by the person you are trusting. Such trust is very vacillating, 'yoo-yoo', sea-saw (up-and-down), inconsistent, and non-enduring because one unfavorable word, action, or attitude can demolish the trust, which picks up again when you get what you want the next day. This kind of conditional trust is common with people who are very selfish and self-seeking, do not fully commit themselves to the people and duties expected in a relationship, or have immature and unstable minds and hearts, as well as those who lack the understanding and dynamics of real life relationships. Generally, conditional trust is very common in many marriages, homes, and in-law relationships, but is also common in several workplaces, friendships, and organizations, and even prevalent in churches. Conditional trust is deceptively fragile, and if the people involved do not realize and deal with the roots of un-commitment and lack of sacrificial love early in the relationship, the whole marriage, courtship, in-law relation, friendship, business partnership, project, fellowship, ministry, club, or association will ultimately crash and crumble tragically on the persons involved somewhere down the road.
C) Common, Normal, or Involuntary (Automatic) Trust
This is trust you normally or automatically exercise without any pause to consider the outcome, because it is virtually part of human life. For example a mother gives breast milk or feeds a baby and automatically trusts that once the nutritious food has entered the child's system, it would produce growth and strength. A driver begins to press on the accelerator once the engine of a vehicle responds favorably to ignition, trusting that the vehicle is going to carry him or her forward without any doubt. Under normal conditions a sleepy person lies in bed at night and fully trusts that he or she is going to sleep soundly and wake up the next morning. Unless other factors come in suddenly or unknowingly to interfere with these normal life processes, and become hindrances or problems that need to be dealt with, we do not have the slightest problem with exercising absolute, automatic trust for such situations. When a husband, wife, family member, fiancée, colleague, business partner, or friend does not exhibit automatic trust that every other person should portray, to your expectation, it then becomes a problem in the relationship. You see such a skeptical person as someone who cannot even exercise simple trust of a child, and believe in relating to you even under the best of all circumstances. Such a person would doubt almost everything you say and do. Even when you serve him or her food or water, the one would not trust you enough to regard it as wholesome. Every conversation with someone else could trigger the suspicion in the one that there is some form of gossip about him or her in at least one or two sentences from your lips. The one would easily suspect that you are cheating on him or her by flirting with any person you get close to. The person never believes any explanation for any mistake you make or deviation from routine (e.g. coming home a little late than usual, absence from work, not providing money, or not returning a phone call). Such a problem of chronic mistrust commonly results from wounds and scars of very bad experiences of the past that the one needs to be healed of. In some cases wrong teaching or transference of wrong instruction that is deeply planted in the mind and spirit by a parent, guardian, or mentor succeeds in creating a very suspicious mindset in the person. The situation could sometimes be satanic as well, in which case the person needs deliverance from a doubtful and suspicious spirit operating on the mind.
D) Regular Tested Trust
This is trust that all of us exercise for someone or something, after several, long term interactions or usage under the same or very similar circumstances. For example all of us respond to adverts on television, on the radio, or by the wayside, and test the products of companies or people's services, before we finally put our trust in goods of the company or persons that satisfy our needs. This is the basis for interviews, exams, and probationary measures that are put in place before employers or leaders assign full duties to people they are not originally familiar with or do not know very well. God warns us to test Christians before making them leaders. It is important for each single person to exercise the necessary steps involved in regular tested trust needed for any intimate relationship, before committing oneself into any serious dating, courtship, or marriage relationship. Sharing secrets, and entering into close friendships, intimate relationships, or close business partnerships without any insight and wisdom that first examine all factors carefully and tests the waters, is the equivalence of first class foolishness. God even commands us to test prophecies (with Biblical knowledge) before accepting them, in order not to act upon false instructions from someone who assumes an air of spirituality and tells us “Thus says the Lord” when God has not spoken. It always pays off to ask all necessary questions to clear all doubts before you give any trust and plunge wholeheartedly into any association or relationship with yourself and your precious resources.
E) Exclusive Tested Trust
This is trust that is peculiar or exclusive to you alone, or particular for you and your spouse, family member, close friend, long standing partner, or special trust among a group of people. It results from long term conscious and unconscious testing of someone or something under special circumstances in addition to all regular situations that are common to relationships. In my opinion, courtship and marriage relationships, as well as serous ministerial and business partnerships come under this category. After careful examination I realize that all the other kinds or categories of trust I have enumerated come into play as preliminary stages before an Exclusive Tested Trust becomes finally established. Exclusive Tested Trust mostly results from appropriate Regular Tested Trust.
For example a wife or husband is selectively chosen to bond permanently with you under your own specially considered circumstances, which becomes a trust that is exclusively tested, developed, and accepted by both of you. No one else share the special trust between the two of you, no matter the kind of trust that in-laws or friends have in each of you. In my opinion, it is this kind of trust that should define the extent and depth of the love, quality, fellowship, and success of any marriage, family life, friendship, church, association, business relationship, and stewardship. Exclusive trust cannot be achieved without fear of God, wisdom, sincerity, sacrifice, selflessness, and sincere love.
To establish Exclusive Trust, you will need to do the following:
You must learn to sacrifice time, effort, money, resources, and love to build such trust (on both sides). No real trust is ever cheap; this is because genuine trust is earned and not just given. Nothing on earth that is truly earned will climb up to the hilltop without effort. If your partner is finding it hard to trust you again after a disappointing behavior or an act of unfaithfulness, then consistently and persistently demonstrate genuine acts of trustworthiness in a convincing manner until trust is re-established.
Deal With Weaknesses
You will have to acknowledge and deal with your own human weaknesses as well as the faults and failings of the other person or persons you are relating to, before you can establish trust between the two of you. If you want people to change, then focus on changing first in order to be a shining example, and be able to also see things clearly enough and be able to deal with them effectively. If you do not remove the huge log in your eye, then you will have very poor vision, which will cause you to mistakenly gouge out the entire eye of your friend when you are trying to remove the small piece of stick in his or her eye. You rather end up making the person blind, in your attempt to deal with issues and establish trust with the individual.
You will need to take special circumstances, problems, and peculiarities of the other person or people into careful consideration, especially the mind of the person you wish to trust. For example: children (immature mind) ; someone with a very weak will and weak spirit (naïve and easily deceived mind) ; very old person (reduced mental faculty and weak physical abilities producing less sharpness of mind) ; troubled or traumatized person (worried and confused mind) , illiterate or poorly educated person (ignorant mind), spiritually possessed or oppressed person or someone dabbling in the occult and witchcraft (satanic controlled mind); unsaved or backslidden person, or someone living in sin (ungodly mind) ; someone with intentions of revenge for an offence or with malice in his or her heart to do you harm (wicked or evil mind) etc.
The devil and malicious carnal minds, in collaboration with normal corrupt human spirits, can influence all these categories of minds to think, act, and behave in disappointing and undesirable ways that make it difficult or sometimes almost impossible to trust the person you are working hard to build trust between you and him or her.
Persevere Till The End
You must determine to endure any hardships and disappointments as you build trust, especially in people who are difficult to live with or hard to relate to. It even becomes tougher when they show no signs of true repentance after they commit offences, and demonstrate no desire to change their bad habits. But, you must determine to persevere until you achieve your ultimate results and reach your goal of building genuine, enduring trust that would promote lasting friendship, fruitfulness, and contentment in your relationship.
Work With People
No one has ever succeeded in establishing of trust in the best relationship with another person without obtaining some form of good advice or essential information from someone else. This is where premarital and post-marital counseling become necessary for a couple to build trust in their marriage. Appropriate conduction of interviews, adequate briefing, proper instructions, important seminars, refresher courses, mentoring techniques and procedures, consultancy, and other forms of information dissemination are essential for the provision of enough knowledge that facilitates the building of trust and confidence. Usually experienced professionals, veteran educators, older employers or employees, politicians and leaders with years of experience, parents, adult family members, special mentors in different fields, pastors, church leaders, and family elders with experience, can be of immense help in guidance and counseling for educational, career, marriage, and family life pursuits. If such counselors and advisors are also wise, spiritual, principled, loving, and godly in character, they can be of tremendous help in advising and assisting you in an all-round handling of someone you closely relate to, especially your husband, wife, in-laws, children, boss, employees, business partner, close friends or associates, colleagues, group members, or congregation. Leaders who rule and handle whole communities, cities, and nations would need expert counsel and opinions of concerned and experienced citizens in order to effectively execute their expected duties. Anyone who has had long association with someone that has similar characteristics as the one you are dealing with can offer you good counseling and guidance. It does not mean you should simply follow everything people suggest to you, but learn to apply the acceptable portions of the knowledge alongside your own convictions in order to gradually build trust in your relationship. If there are very intimate and personal issues involved, then be extra careful how you let these sensitive matters get out to other people. The trustworthy people you consult can also support you in prayer. IF A CONFLICT OF ANY KIND HAS OCCURRED BETWEEN YOU AND THE ONE YOU ARE TRYING TO TRUST, THEN I CAUTION YOU TO BE VERY CAREFUL NEVER TO BRING ANYONE INTO THE PICTURE WHO IS NEITHER PART OF THE PROBLEM NOR PART OF THE SOLUTION!
Work With The Lord
If you believe that God created us, then the best approach to overcoming the hurdles of life or making the best decisions and choices is to allow God to be in charge of your life and all of your affairs. This is not imprisonment to restrict the free expression of your desires, or undue control of your activities, but it is rather a doorway to true freedom, guidance towards genuine success, joy in the midst of trouble, provision of security, and establishment of lasting peace of mind. In my own experience which I wish to recommend to you, I will advise you to: open your heart to the Lord, study your Bible, meditate on God's word at the beginning of each day, and learn to use scripture to control your thoughts, actions, and emotions during the day. Use the scriptures as basis to engage in fervent prayer for yourself and other family members, friends, or persons you are dealing with. Study the Bible and pray jointly as husband and wife, between you and your family member, fiancée, or friend etc., in addition to your own personal meditation and prayers. Jesus said: “Without Me, you can do nothing” (St. John 15: 5). This is my argument: trust is a matter of the mind and heart, and you must admit that you do not even fully know your own mind and heart very well in order to have any power to manage and control your inner-most being. How, then, can you have any power or authority and skill to work and change someone's heart and mind for him or her to become trustworthy, or produce any real sense of trust within you when you are struggling with your own doubts and weaknesses each day?
Let us put in effort and allow more trust to build up in our relationships this year. Do not refuse to care for the needs or feelings of others you relate to, simply because you focus on what you can get to satisfy your selfish desires and ambitions. If you become inconsiderate and only look out for your own interests, then once that goal is achieved, you don't care what anyone thinks or feels about you, and you don't care what they think or feel about you either. That is a very bad way to think and live in a progressive world. We must embark on a crusade that advocates for changes and provisions that establish real trust among us, in order for our homes, marriages, dating, courtship, romantic affairs, family relations, workplaces, institutions, committee activities, projects, churches, evangelistic activities, government, and all other associations to become meaningful, progressive, sweeter, more fruitful, extra enjoyable, very delightful, and more satisfying in 2010.
TO BE CONTINUED
Tune in to JOY 99.7 FM in Accra on Saturdays at 5:30 am – 6:00 am (Ghana Time) or 12:30 am – 1:00 am (US Eastern Time, October - March) and listen to Dr. Kisseadoo's broadcast "Hope For Your Family". Access on the Internet using MYJOYONLINE.COM, and click on “Live Radio”. Obtain more information from Dr. Kisseadoo's books: "Differences Between Males and Females"; "Conflict Resolution and Agreement"; and "10 Keys for Success" published by Red Lead Press, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Search online with: RedLeadBooks.com, using his name Samuel Kisseadoo." Get the 3 books also from Amazon.com. Contact Dr. Kisseadoo in the USA (757-7289330) for copies of all of his 13 books or free counseling and prayer. In Ghana, obtain them at Challenge Bookstore, Legon Bookstore, and other bookstores or from Fruitful Ministries (233-20-8126533 or 233-276-322982).
Visit our website: www.fruitfulministriesint.com for essentials that will enrich your relationships and ministry. You can press Ctrl, hold, and click on it right now. For free counseling, prayer, seminars, and contacts in Ghana, call 233-20-8126533 or 233-276-322982 in Accra, or 233-244-786658 or 233-275-353802 in Kumasi. Attend free family life seminars for the public every 2nd Saturday of the month in Accra, 10am-12pm, or every other Sunday 4pm-6pm in Kumasi.
Copyright Jan. 2010 Rev. Dr. Samuel A. Kisseadoo (Professor of Biology, USA). Founder and President, Fruitful Ministries International Inc.(Evangelistic & Teaching Ministry), 6 Red Robin Turn, Hampton, Virginia 23669, USA.
Ph 757-7289330 Fax 757-7289335 E-mail: [email protected]
Disclaimer: "The views/contents expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of Modern Ghana. Modern Ghana will not be responsible or liable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements contained in this article."