American social worker, author and University of Huston research professor Brené Brown has gained significant influence for her research into vulnerability, courage, authenticity, empathy and shame. She is the author of several successful books, and her presentation on ‘The Power of Vulnerability’ on YouTube is one of the highest rating TED Talks of all time. Her influence is considerable – even extending to the Richmond Football Club. The leadership at Richmond took on board her teaching on vulnerability and gave players and officials the opportunity to share something of their own vulnerabilities. This provided the foundation for significant relationships to develop within the club – Richmond use the word ‘connection’. Some of the players shared their own struggles and rather than causing them to lose face, they actually experienced greater acceptance and support. Their courage in sharing emboldened others to also share their own stories.
The reality is that no one is totally fine all the time. We all have times of vulnerability and insecurity. These feelings are sometimes more apparent than at other times, but one thing is sure: we will all experience periods of vulnerability. It is part of the human condition. It is liberating to be able to share something of this with trusted friends who, in all probability, will also have their own insecurities. The Bible speaks of the paradox that in weakness we discover strength. It also speaks of God’s grace – His undeserved favour and comfort – as always being sufficient whatever our circumstances.
May you experience his grace daily.
Senior School Chaplain