The man wanting to be healed in this passage is suffering from a skin disease. Individuals suffering from leprosy, were considered “unclean.”
In other words, a physical ailment meant he was not welcome in the community. A skin disease kept him from normal social, relational, and economic interactions. He was separated from other people. It’s likely he only associated with people who also had leprosy.
Now consider this definition: “Vulnerability is the emotion that we experience during times of uncertainty, risk, and emotional exposure.” Reread the scripture passage for today.
The man with leprosy placed himself in a vulnerable posture before Jesus. Some might say his actions were courageous.
Here is the challenge before us: the practice of rumbling with vulnerability is the foundational skill courage. So before you say, “I’m not going to be vulnerable.” Let’s explore the myths around vulnerability.
Myth 1: Vulnerability is weakness.
No, it is not. Here’s what I want you to consider. “Can you give me a single example of courage that you’ve witnessed or experienced in your own life that did not require experiencing vulnerability?” Dare to Lead, p. 23
The answer is no. Thousands of people have been asked that question and their answer is “No.” From military personnel to CEOs, from teachers to therapists, from parents to bakers and parents who are bankers, the answer is no. That’s because rumbling with vulnerability is the foundational skill of courage.
If you want to be a courageous parent, partner, leader, co-worker, or follower of Jesus, you’ll need to learn to rumble with vulnerability.
Perhaps the best invitation I can offer is this: If you’re going to rumble with vulnerability, who better to practice with than Jesus?
To help us explore what vulnerability is, each day this week we’ll explore one myth around vulnerability. May the man afflicted with leprosy who dared to ask Jesus for what he needed remind you that vulnerability is not weakness.
How do you characterize the man with leprosy’s actions? Consider your call to courage. What part of your call to courage do you need to remember “vulnerability is not weakness”?
Today, ask one person for something you need. It might be a request for prayer, time to consider an important decision, or a lunch date to catch up. Remember: the foundational skill of courage is rumbling with vulnerability.
It is not weak to feel vulnerable. It is human. Be reminded that “Vulnerability is the emotion that we experience during times of uncertainty, risk and emotional exposure.”
Lord Jesus, there’s no one I’d rather practice vulnerability with than you. Thank you for opening my heart to grow in my capacity to live and love with courage. Help me to rumble with vulnerability today. Amen.
What did you ask for today? What were you feeling when you asked? What thoughts ran through your head before, during, and after the request? Did your behavior align with your thoughts and feelings? Why or why not? As you practice rumbling with vulnerability, lean into your faith in Jesus. Just like the leper, you are never alone.
If you haven’t taken a moment to review the “Overview of It Takes Courage” please do so. You’ll find a few tips that will help you start this journey.