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Wednesday, September 23, 2015

The best laid plans...don't trust 'em!

Why do we trust the people we do in our lives?  If we were honest with ourselves, we'd discover it is because they might just exhibit some type of strength or ability we don't - so we come to rely upon them and trust them fully with that aspect of our lives.  What is inherent in trust is this ability or willingness to rely upon someone other than yourself.  There are times when the only person we do trust is ourselves - but I have to ask you how that has been working for you?  If you are at all like me, you might just occasionally have over-inflated impression of your own ability or strength - trying to tough it out on your own when God has in mind for you to walk it out with another!

Trust the Lord completely, and don’t depend on your own knowledge. With every step you take, think about what he wants, and he will help you go the right way. Don’t trust in your own wisdom, but fear and respect the Lord and stay away from evil. If you do this, it will be like a refreshing drink and medicine for your body. (Proverbs 3:5-8 ERV)

George MacDonald said, "To be trusted is a greater compliment than being loved."  Think about that one for just a moment.  Most of us would say the two go hand-in-hand.  If there is no trust, there can be no love.  Yet, many say they love the other person in the relationship, but they do things all the time which declare that love as lacking or deficient and the trust is broken.  This is just not possible with God.  He cannot betray his love - he cannot violate the trust we place in him.  It is impossible because it is so contrary to what his character is that he cannot possibly violate that trust.  Recognizing this may actually be the very beginning of a deeper relationship with him - trusting him with the things we have tried to manage all by ourselves all this time, but having not done a very good job with at all.

Whenever we are drawn into the believe we possess all the knowledge we need in order to "figure out" one of life's many dilemmas, we are certainly establishing a framework for failure in our lives.  Truth be told, we possess only a fraction of the intellect we need in most circumstances and just barely make it through to the other side of the issue unscathed because we were just lucky enough to avoid harm!  It is like when I put a cold pork chop into hot grease on the stove.  I can expect the hot grease to react to the cold chop by spitting at me a little.  How do I know this?  I now possess knowledge of this reaction because I was burned a couple of times!  This is how we learn many a lesson in our lives - getting burned a few more times than we ever wanted to.  Wouldn't it be better to learn our lessons from one who knows what to expect in the circumstance rather than trying to navigate through the circumstance blindly?

The instruction to us today is to learn to think about what God wants for our lives - to actually trust him enough to believe he has a plan worked out which we can rely upon as what we should be walking in at that very moment.  With every step you take, think about what he wants - not what we imagine, or what we might want overriding that desire he has for us.  The key we might miss in this passage is this conscious awareness of thought which considers what each step we take might look like through his eyes.  If we'd just learn to ask him if the direction we are taking is wise for us at this juncture in our lives, we might just take a few steps in the opposite direction, relying more upon what is unseen, but IN WHOM we know we can trust fully.

Trust isn't the absence of the unknown - it is the ability to rely fully upon what is known while encountering what is unknown.  When we do more than just "run things past God" in a casual or nonchalant manner, we might just avoid a few pitfalls in this life.  I have developed an ongoing dialogue with God throughout the course of my day, not so much because I "have" to run everything I do "past him", but because I know his wisdom is reliable and my half-cocked, poorly-planned "best laid plans" may not always get me the same results his will!  Just sayin!