When the Lord gave me my One Word at the beginning of the year, I have to admit, I thought I may have heard Him wrong. At least I hoped I did. When I asked the Lord for my word I was anticipating He would give me one that was daring, exciting and maybe even adventurous. Instead, He said “TRUST.”
It seemed so common, so obvious. I’ve known the Lord for over seventeen years, hasn’t this relationship always been based on trust? Don’t I already trust you, Lord? I’ve walked through some really difficult things in the past. Could I have made it to the other side of those things without trusting Him?
I reasoned that this whole “trust” thing must be God’s way of telling me that my habit of worrying was not glorifying Him. I decided to stop worrying and make this a year of trust. No big deal, right? This shouldn’t be all that hard.
Then, the rug is pulled out from under me and I’m reminded that I’m still supposed to trust.
In fact, even when I am on my knees praying for wisdom, begging for peace, crying out for provision, still all I hear is “TRUST!” And I want to, I really do. But life isn’t easy. Things never seem to go as planned, as I planned anyway.
But nothing surprises the Lord my God and when He gave me my word He knew full well what was coming. He knew that the only way through it was for me to trust Him and keep walking in obedience on this path He put before me. He reminds me to fix my eyes on Jesus (Hebrews 12:2) and when I do, the trial actually looks smaller as I glance at it in my peripheral vision.
What I’m learning through this trial is that trusting God is hard. Much harder than I had anticipated. It’s hard on my flesh that likes to be in control. It’s harder still on the part of me that prefers self-controlled chaos over God-controlled order. And I won’t even get into the fact that I have always felt my timetable was much wiser than His.
Trusting God, when our plans go awry – when the doctor says just what we prayed we wouldn’t hear, when the job we desperately need slips through our hands, when someone we love breaks our heart, when hope continues to be deferred and no one seems to see or understand our pain – is when trust is real. When trusting Him feels impossible it’s then that it is utterly essential.
Everything we go through in life has already been sifted through the loving hand of our Father in heaven and no matter how much it hurts or confuses us, He can be trusted. He will come through for us. He won’t necessarily do what we want Him to do or even when we want Him to do it. He will however do what is best for us in the long run. See, God is all about the long run. His perspective is different from ours. He has a grasp on what eternity looks like; He actually understands infinity.
He knows that our time on earth is but a breath and our eternal Christ-likeness is far more important than our momentary comfort. He knows that a man who has been broken is far more valuable and useful to His kingdom than a man who has never faced heartache.
He loves us perfectly, for our best and for His glory. God is good and His ways and His heart for us can be trusted. Those who trust in the Lord will never be put to shame! (Romans 10:11) Even better, He is able to do exceedingly, abundantly, more for us than we could ever hope or imagine! (Ephesians 3:20)
I say these things as much to myself as you who are reading this because I am in the midst of a struggle and I need these reminders. I need others around me praying and speaking life into these dry and weary bones. We all need this! Hiding out in our own little world, away from the body of Christ, until the storm has passed is not the type of trust He wants from us. We need to hear that God is for us so who could be against us. (Romans 8:31) We need to be reminded that we are more than conquerors (Romans 8:37) and that we can do all things, even the unbearable things, through Christ who strengthens us (Philippians 4:13). We need to rely on the truth that with God ALL things are possible! (Matthew 19:26)
We need to learn that it isn’t real trust if it’s only in the good times.
And I guess I also needed to learn that trust God’s way IS daring, exciting, and yes, even adventurous!