We need to be able to ask questions even when the process isn’t comfortable.
As I watched the opening video for The Quest, I was struck by the statement that we cannot have intimacy with people we cannot ask (or be asked).
I agree. If we can’t ask honest questions and receive a respectful response, we can’t find closeness with that person.
But the response is often the key. We might feel comfortable asking questions, but if the person we’re asking refuses to consider our wonderings, wrestle alongside us, and honestly share, our questions fall on closed ears. Sometimes we even get an angry response or a rationalized explanation why the questions will not and should not be addressed.
Sometimes people assume they know how someone will respond to a question they ask, so they don’t ask the question, and they get angry with the person or group of people, not because of an actual response but because of an presumed response. Or sometimes there has been an angry or disrespectful response, so future questions are silenced; however, maybe the person was caught off guard. Maybe that initial question was just enough to begin a reflective process someone is later willing to share.
Good boundaries are important. We shouldn’t continue to approach people who are disrespectful, conniving, rude, dishonest, deceptive, and evasive. Some people are not willing to invite honesty and transparency, wrestling through the tough stuff. But sometimes we claim boundaries that shouldn’t exist. We claim we’re setting healthy boundaries when we might simply be too defensive or self-absorbed.
Ask (and receive) questions.
Know you won’t always find (or have) the answers. The quest and the relationship are often the point, not the questions and answers themselves.
Don’t let your own perspective get in the way of your respect for others.