Her voice was muffled. Our conversation had to push through a special vent in the thick wall of bullet-proof glass. “Check that all the Passport details are correct before you leave today.” She repeated for me.
Standing there, I couldn’t help but wonder why they need bullet-proof glass and armed security guards . What horrors are expected here? What violence was anticipated at this Passport Office? What potential life-threatening attack inspired the design of such a fortress?
I can’t help but feel like we humans have become a like this office: over protective, over-cautious, over separated.
When the risk of being hurt seems too great, build a wall. A thick wall. And a lie sets in: humans cannot be trusted. You give your heart but get trampled. You share your journey but get judged. You trust but you get betrayed.
Oh glorious wall. Keeps those hurtful people out.
But the emotional fortress betrays the builder. It doesn’t just keep the hurtful people out, it keeps ALL people out.
I left the building thinking about how to be more purposeful in keeping my walls down. Thinking about how important it is to keep trusting people.
The blessings of sharing life with other humans far outweigh the pains. Right? Yes? Yes. I think so.
_ _ _
“Mummy! A man waved at me so I waved back! Then he started talking to me…” My sweet child was smiling through the car window at a pan-handler.
Oh the irony. As we drove away from the bullet-proof Passport Office, I had to talk to my pure-hearted children about “strangers” and being safe. About not trusting people. Right after I sat thinking about how important it is to trust people.
It made me sad.
So where is the balance? How can the beauty of human relationships thrive when the risks are so great? When there are horrors and violence?
I don’t want us to live in a fortress of mistrust but I also don’t want us to live being needlessly exposed danger.
I’ve added this dilemma to my prayer list. Only God can show us the way to balance.
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. (Ephesians 6:10-18 ESV)