Learning to Trust God

“And the disciples were astonished at His words. But Jesus answereth again, and saith unto them, ‘Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God!’” (Mark 10:24 KJV)

Trust can be a very fickle companion. Why? Because it’s dependent upon the validity of at least two components – the trust-er and the trust-ee. What does that mean? It means I can trust in an idol made of wood, believing my devotion to that idol will bring good karma into my life. Or I can trust my intellect and conclude there is no God. I can trust that one brand of peanut butter is better than another. And on and on it goes.

Life is filled with decisions we make every day involving trust, yet of all the ways we exercise trust, the only one that will determine where we’ll spend eternity is our trust, or lack thereof, in Jesus. Trust and belief go hand in hand.

In Mark 9 we read Mark’s account of the time Jesus’ appearance was transformed. This is often referred to as His “transfiguration.” Peter, James, and John witnessed this miraculous occurrence, but as they came down from the mountain Jesus was met by a father whose demon-possessed son wasn’t healed by the other disciples. So, he said to Jesus: “Have mercy on us and help us, if You can.”

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That’s where a lot of people find themselves in their consideration of Jesus. We place our trust in the pursuit of riches, but even if we find wealth, it never satisfies. We place our trust in relationships, believing if we find that special person, we’ll be satisfied. Or we place our trust in our own ability to find satisfaction in work, athletics, video games, or whatever, yet none offer the forgiveness, peace, contentment, and ultimate satisfaction we seek.

Then we “try” Jesus. And our attitude is: “We’ve tried everything else, maybe You can help!” And, if we’ll listen, we’ll hear Jesus say to us what He said to this bewildered father: “What do you mean, ‘If I can?’ …Anything is possible if a person believes.”

In this context the word Jesus used that’s translated “believe” means “to place one’s trust in (Jesus).” Trust is a critical element if we’re going to be a Jesus follower, that begins with “saving faith,” but is tested every day as we bring our needs to Him.

David Jeremiah wrote in a recent Turning Point devotion: “When we trust God for daily provisions, it teaches us to depend on Him and His faithfulness to us. He knows how to give us daily bread, daily strength, daily encouragement, daily opportunities, and daily fellowship with Himself and others.” 

Think of a small child learning to walk. I realize you may be an exception, but most of us struggled to pull ourselves up, learn to balance, then risk taking that first step. What happened then? We fell, got back up and tried again and again and again.

Learning to trust God is a process that, like learning to walk, involves trying and failing. Perhaps that’s one of the reasons the Lord’s prayer includes asking for daily provision. Realizing how faithful God is to provide our needs (not always our wants), builds His credibility in our hearts and minds and enables us, over time, to trust Him with our whole lives.

Having walked with the Lord for nearly 60 years, I have no reservation in my trust of Him. The issue with which I have wrestled the most in my life isn’t if I can trust God, but if He can trust me.

Blessings, Ed 😊

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