I have been thinking a lot about trust lately.
I started to mention on Monday that Hubby and I are coming into another season of transition. Gosh, if I am honest, it feels like we have been transitioning ever since we got married. I suppose in some way or another we always have been. New marriage, moving, graduating college, new jobs, moving, new church, moving, church planting, moving (we have moved every year the last 5 years, so no exaggeration in that repetition).
Maybe all of us are transitioning somewhere? Maybe if we are living intentionally and/or paying attention there is always some kind of transition happening to us? Maybe, like us, its moving, or changing jobs, yourself or your children aging, relationships changing.
This season of transition, like most of them, brings with it many unknowns, so many options, decisions, and dreams to consider.
Remember that personality talk last week? One personality trait that Hubby and I share in outstanding measure is being EXTREME planners. Like, we are the type to think “if this person responds this way here is what we will do, but if they do this then we will handle it like this.” We consider all scenarios, all possible outcomes, all. the. things.
As we have been praying about and considering all thats before us in this next year, all the transition, something in me has been pushing back on all that planning. Not that planning is wrong, certainly being organized and prepared has its benefits. Not the planning itself I suppose, but I have been challenged in my heart to pay a bit more attention to why I am making some of those plans.
I know for me, I consider all the scenarios, make all the plans, to make sure I am prepared for the worst. What has been stirring in me lately is that those considerations often aren’t coming from a place trust at all, in fact just the opposite. I want to have everything in line, controlled, because I do not trust that God can control it himself.
I know, I know. He is the God of the universe *, He breathes stars into existence*, with a puff of his NOSE He splits oceans apart*, He literally holds the world together *. But if I am honest, and maybe if you are too, it is easy to believe in this macro level stuff, its the day to day, little-ole-me stuff thats a heck of a lot harder.
Perhaps its not that I don’t believe God is in control, but what I actually struggle to believe is that He is good.
Like, when Hubby and I plan to take a risk, we always make sure we have a fall back plan. Sure we believe God is in control, but not that He is good enough to keep our feet from slipping *, or to provide for our needs *.
Or when I get down in the dumps about all the things I have had to (or may have to) sacrifice this side of heaven, like family, friends, comfortability. Sure I would give you the party line “God is in control,” but in the days (sometimes weeks, sometimes months) that I let it suck me down a deep pit, or when I plan for the future expecting that lack to continue, what I am really saying is “God is not good enough to make up the difference. God takes away, but He does not give, at least not to me.”
Or even just simply tossing and turning over every decision, and fearing making the wrong one. What we are saying is straight up “God I don’t believe you are in control and I do not believe that your goodness will keep me from making a wrong choice.”
I know I am not alone here.
In these days of transition though, with the sweet gentle prompting of the Holy Spirit, I am trying something new. See, I know I cant just turn off years of over calculating, not trusting or believing in Gods goodness, but what I can do is “take every thought captive to make it obedient to Christ. * ”
When my mind wants me to believe that I have sacrificed for nothing, I will remind myself of what is true; that when God takes, He is faithful to return twofold what has been lost, like He did for Job *. I will remember that He is not unjust, that He sees the work done on behalf of his people * . I will tell myself not to grow weary of doing good, for when the time is right, I will reap a great harvest if I don’t give up *.
When I fear the future, when I can’t stop pondering the “what-if’s” I will take a moment to remember that God is a good and loving father * *, that He is for me, that He delights in showing mercy *, that He is not looking to confuse * us or set us up to fail or fall *, He makes the path we walk straight *. In fact, He holds me up in his right hand *, He rejoices over me with song *.
This work of taking thoughts captive is hard, it requires so much attention and diligence. But I am beginning to realize that trying to control and manipulate is even harder. Sure, there are many reasons I could question or doubt Gods goodness, but oh friend, there are so so many more reasons to believe it. I want to take up Bill Johnson’s call to “. . .never sacrifice what you know about God to the questions that remain unanswered.” I know He is good, He has said so, He has proved it. Will you believe with me?