A person I work with asked me today how I was handling life these days. She wanted to know how to pray for me. I simply said that I was trying to learn how to trust in God . Sounds noble, but trusting is by far the most difficult thing for me to do. I can’t do it most days. I really struggle with allowing God to have my trust. It usually feels better for me to figure out a plan on my own. It actually feels easier to put in the work of planning and sweating out a desired outcome than it is to just do nothing but trust.
I’ve stumbled across a really good book about trust. It’s called “Ruthless Trust” by Brennan Manning. And I figured if your like me these days, struggling to trust that maybe you would benefit from this excerpt…
“A careful reading of the gospel message suggests that Jesus needs nothing but our humility and confidence to work miracles in us. Jesus found the humility of the Canaanite woman so irresistible that he could not refuse what she asked. “Even the dogs eat the scraps that fall from the master’s table,” she said. After she humbled herself in this way, Jesus exalted her: “Woman, you have great trust. Your request is granted” (Matt. 14:28). Deeply moved by the humble confidence of the thief on the cross—“Lord, remember me when you come into your Kingdom” (Luke 23:42)—Jesus canceled the man’s lifetime of sin and transmogrified the ragamuffin into the first canonized saint. No million years in purgatory, no laps in the lake of fire—“Today you will be with me in Paradise” (v. 43). With the memory of his triple denial engraved on his psyche, Peter wrote from his heart: “Wrap yourselves in humility and be servants of each other, because God refuses the proud and will always favor the humble” (1 Peter 5:5-6).
JESUS COMPARED the Kingdom of God to the inexplicable bounty reaped by the man who throws seed on the land. With that simple act, the farmer’s work is done. He hibernates for the winter, sleeps late, goes bowling, watches television, washes clothes, repairs the hole in the roof, and travels to Delaware, New Mexico, and Oregon to visit his three children. Whether it is night or day, whether the farmer is asleep or awake, at home or on the road, the seed he scattered sprouts and grows. He does not have a clue how it happened. The earth does it all without his help. First the shoot, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. One sunlit morning, he has six buttermilk pancakes and four slices of Canadian bacon for breakfast, walks out the door, scratches his head at the ripened grain, and reaps his harvest (Mark 4:26-29).”
So trust is the willingness to let God do the work in our lives. Because the “work of a heart” after all is really a mystery. Only God can heal, mend the brokenness and call us to place trust in Him. Only God can bring about a peace in the middle of chaos.
I love this verse when I need to remind myself to keep my trust firm in Christ…
“I’ve told you all this, so that trusting me, you will be unshakable and assured, deeply at peace. In this godless world you will continue to experience difficulties. But have confidence, I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33, The Message and Douay-Rheims).