It was late, but I could not sleep. I had been unable to get in touch with my son who was away on business. My children are young adults, but my mama’s heart was still worried. When my daughter asked why I was so worried, my response summed up my fears, “It’s not that I don’t trust your brother, I don’t entirely trust those with whom he is traveling or may be staying because I don’t know them.”
My daughter suggested I read Psalm 91, “I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.” Her gentle reminder was meant to help me remember who was really in control, and in whom I should put my trust.
As I read the chapter, I thought about how often we put our trust in men; I thought about myself and the trials that have shaken my faith in mankind, and I thought about recent conversations with dear Christian friends and the trials that have shaken their trust.
Trust – or rather mistrust -is an odd paradox for Christians. To trust we must relinquish control and place our hope and faith in another, but as Christians we also know there is a greater power in control. So herein is the paradox– to doubt in man’s abilities is to distrust God who works through the lives of men. Do we trust God to love us through our husbands, do we trust God to work in the lives of our children, do we trust God to bless us through the decisions of our boss, do we trust Him despite the faults or selfish motivations of others, and do we believe in the power of God to work through fallible men?
When difficult circumstances try us or disaster strikes, I’m not sure which is shaken more – our trust in man or our trust in God?
Because when I doubt another person’s ability to act in my best interest, I really doubt God to intervene on my behalf. I doubt His goodness and His grace that is manifested in the difficult and trying circumstances in my life as well as the good and beautiful. I know God is in control; however in my life, I make this circle over and over. I know that it is trials that test my trust and faith, and it is the trials and the testing that produces the character and endurance that enables me to hope, and I can hope because I know that God’s love is poured into my heart.
So when in the morning the phone rings and my unfounded fears are dispelled, I wonder how could I ever doubt the one who, despite my sin, died for me? How do I let doubt and fear cloud my knowledge of God’s love. Oh how my heart often despises my own distrusting, sinful nature and my earnest prayer is that one day I might learn to walk with a simple and quiet faith that trusts in my Lord in all things at all times without fear or doubt and that I might continually rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.
Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. 3Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.
6You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. 7Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. 8But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5: 1-8