The other day I was sitting down for some time with the Lord and I was struggling with what to do. I began thinking through where I was with Him, what I was wrestling with at the time, and what was preoccupying my heart and mind that morning. The word that kept coming to mind consistently was trust. Something so simple, and yet it’s something that has been holding me back in a big way. It’s so easy to say the words “Yes Lord, I trust You!” But for the first time in a long, long time, my foot is being put to the fire in a very real way, and what I’ve found is that my trust in the Lord is embarrassingly conditional.
So here I was with nothing but my Bible, a pen, and the Lord. I started looking for scriptures on trust. About 3 verses in, the obvious one comes up, you know, the one we all learned in VBS and probably have cross-stitched or monogrammed on something in our houses – Proverbs 3:5-6.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.”
I read it, then I read it again. Then I felt the Lord telling me to read it once more, but this time He opened my heart to see this well-known scripture in a completely different light.
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart . . .” Okay, okay! I get it. I need to trust you more. Nope, read it again.
“TRUST in the Lord with all your heart . . .”
“Trust in the Lord with ALL your heart . . .”
It was starting to feel like that passage in the Bible where Jesus is asking Peter over and over again, “Do you love me?” And sweet Peter just isn’t hearing the real question. Then it hits him.
And then it hit ME! I’ve always read this scripture understanding it as “Trust in the Lord with the full capacity that your heart is capable of.” But in this moment, the Lord was going straight for the jugular and asking me with that gentle whisper that always cuts to the core, “Baby girl, do you trust me with your heart? Do you trust me to care for your most secret inner being? Do you believe that I have what it takes to protect and hold that piece of you that no one else sees?” My mouth was trying its hardest to form the words “Yes, of course!” But it just wouldn’t come out, because I knew what the real answer was. No, I really don’t.
Something inside of me just can’t believe that He’s got what it takes to see me through one of the toughest seasons of my life and keep my heart from being torn to shreds. I’m the only one qualified. Only I can see to it that I don’t get too attached to a certain house, or get my hopes up too high about a certain job opportunity. Only I am able to make sure I come out of this unscathed. Then I realized in a very mortifying way that I am in fact doing a terrible job of all those things. My staunch refusal to trust the Lord with my heart itself is keeping me from releasing my trust in Him to see my family through this journey. If I can’t trust Him to care for my heart when all is said and done, then I don’t really trust that He’s got the best plan imaginable for me and my family. It automatically sets up restrictions and parameters for what I am believing Him for. It immediately puts up that stiff arm and says “I will only give you my trust if you promise not to test it.”
But here’s the deal, trust that goes untested is merely wishful thinking. It’s the tested kind of trust that pushes us to our knees, that forces our eyes to the Heavens, that reveals what we’re really made of. I’m good at talking the talk. My faith in God for other people is huge! I could make your head spin with how fast I can jump on board someone else’s faith step. “You quit that job!” “Pull those kids out of school and move to the other side of the world!” “Of course God’s going to provide for you!” But when the tables are turned, and I’m the one being asked to take the scary step of faith, suddenly I realize that my faith in God for myself is quite small.
So every morning (and usually at least one more time before going to bed each night), I have to choose to stop and surrender it all . . . again. I literally have to say out loud “I will trust in the Lord with all my heart – including the state of my heart! I will not hold back from exploring the path You have for me just because it puts my heart at risk. I will believe Your promises before I will believe in my own strength.”
Is it easy for you to trust the Lord in all things, or do you find that you tend to dig your feet in when tested? How do you combat that inner dialogue when doubt creeps in? What scriptures do you cling to during those times? Please comment and join the discussion.