Proverbs 3:5, 6 Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding; 6 think about Him in all your ways, and He will guide you on the right paths.
Have you ever considered the idea that ‘trusting the Lord’ is a learned skill? The more we do it, the better we can become at it. Trusting the Lord comes through making daily choices as to where will we place our confidence. It frequently involves outward decision making, such as tithing or giving when finances are tight. We might be faced with situations that appear to require a ‘small’ inappropriate compromise in order to prevent a larger negative – like loss of a job, or a sale or a relationship.
Doing the right thing is important, but trusting in the Lord offers so much more. Think of the verse where we are commanded not to be anxious over anything (Phil 4:6). We can do the right thing while being beside ourselves with anxiety and concern. The children of Israel could have chosen to enter the land in spite of the giants and the negative report of the 10 spies. They were frightened but they could have still obeyed the Lord.
A most vital component in this process is the relationship we have with the Lord. The closer our walk is with Him, the greater is our freedom from anxiety and worry in difficult situations. Consider the following situations and what you are likely to experience internally in each of them:
- You are lost, driving in a city you’ve never been in; you are in an unsavory area and your cell phone is not working; you have an important appointment to keep – if only you can find it.
- Same as #1 but your cell phone begins working; so you call your friend you’re meeting with – and get his voice mail.
- Same as # 1 but you ask someone for directions and they sound a bit confused as they give them to you.
- Same as #1 but you remember you have a GPS. You plug it in; enter the address of the appointment; push the go button and you immediately know how to get there and how long it will take.
The point isn’t to go out and buy a GPS – but to recognize how different our state of being can be in different situations. The more we learn to trust in the Lord, the more we are able to have the peaceful heart response of situation #4 while in situations like #1.