Trust is essential for healthy relationships. So much so that you might wonder if trusting too much is even possible. Wouldn’t more always be better?
To say trusting too much is dangerous is like saying that too much love or too much chocolate will kill you. How can you go wrong with something so good that is often in short supply?
Trusting Too Much
Yes, it’s possible to trust too much. It’s called blind trust. Although, no one will probably fault you for it. That’s because your trust benefits others. It will benefit you too, but only up to a point.
Trust has a natural limit or capacity much like a cup. If you fill a cup beyond its capacity, you will make a mess and waste your refreshing drink. Trust has a limit like your body has a limit. You can give certain parts away like a kidney and still live, but most other parts you can’t live without.
Trusting too much is like giving away an essential body part and expecting the recipient will be able to keep you alive. It’s depending on someone for something they can’t possibly give you. You were never meant to function that way.
If you trust others too much, you are open to being taken advantage of. Others might benefit, but only at your expense. When that happens you are going to get hurt. The more you hurt, the more you are likely to decrease your level of trust. In this case, that wouldn’t be bad except if you become determined to overprotect yourself. Then you might trust too little.
Trusting Too Little
If trusting benefits you and others, it must be possible to trust too little. It’s called mistrust. What if the person you are in a relationship with is trustworthy but you aren’t capable of trusting? That’s going to slow down your relationship, maybe to the point of breaking it.
How would a teenager feel about a mom who walks him to school and sits with him in class? Assuming the teenager normally makes it to school on his own and participates in class, this extreme hovering would degrade the relationship. The teen would probably either begin to rebel (which would be healthy) or suffer from low confidence (which would be unhealthy).
In an extreme case, trusting too little is called paranoia. A mom might have skipped school when she was a teenager. Perhaps she suffered from low self-esteem because her classmates teased her. She could over-emphasize her past hurts and then project them onto her son. It’s possible she feels too vulnerable even when her surrounding environment is safe.
Trusting Just Right
What is a person to do? If you trust too much, you can be hurt. If you trust too little, you hinder your relationships. The right amount of trust is called perceptive trust. The person engaged in perceptive trust is open to trusting others to the degree that they show themselves trustworthy. That’s smart.
Trust is evidence of a healthy relationship. But the cautions about trusting too much still apply. The amount of trust you place in an imperfect human should still be limited. Trusting too much will break your relationships with other humans. Others can’t live up to an exaggerated amount of trust. With too high expectations of a person, the relationship is doomed to fail from the start.
Trusting too much puts people on a pedestal. It can become idolatry.
It is better to trust the Lord for protection than to trust anyone else, including strong leaders.Psalm 118:8-9 CEV
No matter how trustworthy another person is, there will always be some risk to trusting him. Nobody is perfect. Anyone at any time can let you down. So why should you trust anyone, including God who allows others to hurt you?
You can never trust God too much. He is completely trustworthy. You can’t blame Him for others’ mistakes. The more you trust God, without limit, the better off you will be.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart;Proverbs 3:5 NLT
do not depend on your own understanding.
Trusting God with all you’ve got provides you with an insurance policy. If anyone lets you down, God will always be there to take care of you. That might not always make sense, but it doesn’t have to when you place your trust in God.