Thank you for always supporting!
It sounds like a great thing to say, but is it always? It was intended to affirm someone in a challenging situation—a complicated situation. Under emotionally charged conditions, we often passionately share our opinions. Our passions can be commendable but not always healthily expressed. We likely don’t have all the pieces of information, just enough to take a stand, pit ourselves not only for but against something or someone, and invite others to join us.
When emotionally charged, we rarely invite others to healthily discuss. Being respectful to those who take a stand in opposition takes restraint and respect. It is ironic that we often feel the most certain and stable when we are shaky, which is evidence of letting our emotions drive us more than wisdom and humility.
Is our goal to be affirmed, to prove our point, or is it to engage well? Do we want to gather people to agree with us, or do we desire to encourage others to search for truth, question with authenticity, and grow in faith? The way we invite others matters. We can’t control their response, but we can manage ours. Our posture matters—as does our support.
“Always supporting” might be a bit much. We might not know exactly what we’re affirming. Our expression of support could strengthen a misguided resolve. We undermine our own character when we’re not willing to press into humble authenticity. Even when we can’t fathom the full breadth of a situation, which is most of the time, we can firmly hold an opinion and respect a dialogue that stretches us.
Community can be comforting, but only healthy community will help us grow.