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What is trust?

It’s to see and identify when we see it.  But it’s not all that easy to define.

Here’s how I define trust.  Trust is a relationship with others and with institutions that is based on honesty, integrity, vulnerability, and knowing that someone has your back in case of an emergency.

Another way of putting it is that trust is when you are a part of some larger group, even if you don’t personally know the people, but you know that everyone has similar values and there is a sense of commonality.

Trust is the foundation of community.  Without trust, there really can’t be community.  Without trust, there is no sense of safety.  Without trust, people are busy looking behind their backs to ensure they don’t get stabbed in the back.  When that happens, no one is looking out for anyone else.  Without trust, it’s pretty lonely out there.

Trust is a foundation for a society to advance and thrive.  Without it, there is a great deal of anxiety and strife.

Trust is an expectation and a sense of predictability.  This brings stability and an openness to opportunity.  If trust is lacking, so is growth.  Without trust, the focus is on survival.

This is most certainly true for a society, a nation, a community, an organization, and a church.