Who are the vulnerable ones?

Published 2:22 pm Thursday, October 4, 2018

By QuaWanna Bannarbie

If I were to ask you to describe a vulnerable being, I imagine you would present a sketch of someone who is disabled, unable to protect himself, susceptible to harm or deprived in some way. In society, we consider our youth and our elderly as vulnerable people.

In today’s column, we are tackling the question of “Who?” in our “Five Ws” investigation of vulnerability in community. When we look at who, we are asking two different questions. Who to identify as vulnerable and who to be vulnerable with.

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To help us properly recognize the vulnerable ones, let me introduce you to our standard vulnerable being.

He developed the most complex organisms on earth. His creation was highly multidimensional because He wrapped His spirit within flesh and breathed the being to life. The awakened creation was called man and became an alive spirit being embodied within a natural, physical frame. After His creation awakened, the Creator did the most liberating thing ever done — He gave the man free will to choose between good and evil. When the humans chose evil over and over again, the Creator sent His son, Jesus, to die for all of the humans’ offspring in order to pay the debt for the many evil deeds committed. He raised his son from the dead and promised those who believed in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus and followed His example would be rewarded with eternal life to live with the Creator forever.

Our standard of a vulnerable one is God Himself. His vulnerability was demonstrated in desiring a community of image bearers (that would be you and me) and sending His son to sacrifice for our sake. His vulnerability created a people that would carry out His work in the earth. God’s vulnerability has a name … it is Jesus.

The Bible says in Philippians 2:7-8 that He “made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.” Jesus’ humility remind us that no one is exempt. If God is vulnerable, who are you not to be?

All are vulnerable because Christ died for all of us (2 Corinthians 5:15). To know who you are to be vulnerable with, you need to start with the standard vulnerable one. Those that follow Jesus recognize the opportunity presented by such vulnerability. The vulnerable ones also understand the cost of vulnerability … it is a die-hard price.

Now that you can identify vulnerability in community and know that no one is exempt, next week we will examine when to be vulnerable in community.

QuaWanna Bannarbie is an adjunct professor of nonprofit leadership and management with Indiana Wesleyan University, National and Global. Her children attend Suffolk Public Schools. Connect with her via Twitter @QNikki_Notes.