5    Trust in the LORD with all your heart
     and lean not on your own understanding;
6    in all your ways acknowledge him,
     and he will direct your paths.
               Proverbs 3:5-6

Trust, Lean, Acknowledge, Direct

When we trust God, leaning not on our own wisdom, but instead acknowledging him – seeking His wisdom, we can be confident that He will direct us into paths that are a perfect for us. What a great thing! I can rest in knowing this. I can quit my striving and my worrying when I am confident of this…Can’t I? Then why is it still so hard sometimes? Why am I still tempted to worry and/or take things into my own hands?

How Do I Really Trust God?

First let me tell you that it’s possible. I come from a long line of worriers. Within my family, worrying is something like a badge of honor. Somehow, worrying about someone seems to be a primary way that we show someone we care about them. When I first met my husband he affectionately called me his wart – which was short for worry wart. It didn’t take long before I decided I wanted a better nickname! So I began to intentionally work on trusting God instead of worrying. It has worked. Many years later, I am no longer Phil’s wart. Every now and then he’ll catch me slipping into patterns of worry and he’ll use the nickname, but it doesn’t happen very often any more. And trust me. Life is so much better when we forgo the worrying.

I saw a sign once that said “Worry is an incredible waste of the imagination.” I thought that was wonderful – because it’s so true. Worry uses the imagination to conjure up all the negative things that could possible happen in a given situation. Wouldn’t you rather use that imagination to think about all the positive things that could come out of a given situation? I would! So I’m going to give you a couple of steps I’ve followed, and continue to follow, that enables me to put feet on the verse we’ve been studying.

  1. The first step in trusting God is to decide to trust God. This isn’t rocket science! At some point, we have to decide that God is trustworthy, based on His Word and His character and His past history with us. We have to come to the point where we don’t just say we believe Him, but we actually act like we believe Him. He says He’ll direct us. Let’s trust Him to do so. That means every time there is doubt creeping into our thoughts, we decide again that we will trust God and we stop letting our imagination go to all the negative possibilities.I remember leading a missions trip a few years ago. My dear aunt was a part of the trip. We were out of the country for ten days, and finally were back on US soil. We had just gotten on the plane that would take us home. I was sitting next to my aunt and she was looking out the window. Sometimes ignorance is bliss! My aunt saw that they did not load our luggage on the plane. The brought the luggage cart to the plane, loaded some of it, then took it away. Our luggage was still on the cart they drove away. She became anxious and told me about it. My response was born more out of tiredness than wisdom, but it proved to have wisdom in it. I simply said “Well, you can worry about that if you want to. I’m going to enjoy the flight home.” The wisdom is that we can choose to worry about things if we want to. Most of those things will work themselves out on their. We made it home. Some of us didn’t get our luggage until the next day. Not a big deal. And the truth is that most of what we worry about really isn’t a big deal. You’ve heard the phrase “don’t sweat the small stuff…and it’s all small stuff to God.” So at some point, you just have to decide that you will trust God and not worry.
  2. Get to know God better. I’ve found that we trust most those we know the best. So get to know Him better than you know anybody else. You’ll learn how He has been faithful to others in the situation you’re facing. Your eyes will be opened to how He has been faithful to you in the past. You’ll even see how He has met your needs when things spun out of control in the past. God is the One who holds your future in His hands. Period. Not you, not your spouse, not your children, not your parents, not your boss, not your friends, not your pastor, not your counselor, not your job, not your hobby, not the money in your bank account, not your connections in the community, not anything that you might be tempted to depend on. God holds you and He holds your future in His hands. So get to know Him. Join a Bible study, attend church regularly, read your Bible and pray for longer periods of time one or two days a week, read other Christian books. I find that reading Christian biographies really teach me a lot about how God works and how faithful He has been throughout time.What he’s done before He’ll do again. What He’s done for anyone He can do for you. You’ve made a decision to trust God. The ability to trust Him comes through faith. Faith is increased by pursuing God consistently.

If you struggle with trusting God, choose just one situation today and decide to trust Him in that situation. Don’t try to trust Him for every need you have right now – it will be too much for you and you will undoubtedly fail to trust Him in one of those areas. Then you’ll forget all the situations you trusted Him in and you’ll feel like you’ve failed. I don’t want to set you up for failure. I want you to experience what trusting God feels like. How it is different from the way you’ve been living. So start small. Find that one situation, commit to taking that matter to God in prayer and trusting Him to reveal what, if any, action you should take. Then rest. Be confident in Him. Know He’ll answer, so you don’t have to figure out what to do in the meantime. When you’re tempted to worry remind yourself of His faithfulness and thank Him for the answer that is on the way. When you’re still tempted to worry, spend some time getting to know Him better. God is up to something in your life! He wants you to trust Him for that thing you’re most worried about.

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 direct your paths.
      Proverbs 3:5-6

Comments are closed.

© copyright 2009-2013, Data Designs Publishing and Sandra J. Hovatter