Skip to main content

Trust, but verify

Robert E. Lee said, "I cannot trust a man to control others who cannot control himself." Now, that is a novel concept! We get this mixed up - we look for someone to place in leadership over our lives not because they control themselves well, but because they have a plan.  Plans are good, don't get me wrong - but actually being able to work out the plan is quite another matter!  We have also probably heard the Ronald Reagan advice to "trust by verify".  He wasn't saying we should place our blind trust in individuals, circumstances, or plans.  He meant the source of the information we receive in any form - written, spoken, observed, etc. - must be considered, BUT we must never just accept it at "face value". The truth must be established through thorough examination.

Place your trust in the Eternal; rely on Him completely; never depend upon your own ideas and inventions. Give Him the credit for everything you accomplish, and He will smooth out and straighten the road that lies ahead.(Proverbs 29:25 VOICE)

If we are really honest here, most of what we accomplish in life isn't because we had the best of plans.  It is more likely we experienced some "perfect storm" kind of moment when the stuff we hoped would happen just does.  It is like when I experiment with making a meal - I put the stuff we like together in this way or that - but the truth of the matter is that I don't always hit a home run!  Why?  The ingredients were the same as the last time I made it.  The cook was the same.  The pans were the same ones I used the last time. What is different?  The food!  The exact ingredients may be "similar", but are they truthfully the same?  No!  They are different because although the food "items" are the same, they are also different.  Sometimes we get duped into believing this way - we see something which looks "the same" as something we trust in and then we automatically think it must be okay to trust in that, as well.  I think this might be how some of us fall into the traps of believing things which are really just deviations from the truth!

When we trust, but don't "verify" what or who it is we are trusting in, we are opening ourselves up to being misled. What seems one way on the surface might just be a totally different thing just beneath the surface!  We must consider the source, uncover the truth, and then compare what we find under the surface with the one thing we can count on to always be consistent and reliable - the Word of God.  Now, I know the scriptures may not tell us "who" to pick as the Prime Minister, President, or even as our boss - but the principles of solid leadership are evident as we read through scripture.  So, we can compare what we see, hear, and come to understand about an individual to what we see modeled within scripture.  The scriptures may not tell us where to invest our monies, but they do give us sound advice on giving first, saving a little for the future, and then learning to live within our means.  Where we choose to invest our monies might not matter to some, but if the business we place our treasures in doesn't uphold the truths taught in scripture, then we are probably not investing wisely.  You see, we trust, but we also verify - we use what we have been given as a source in our lives as a tool to help us make decisions and choose as wisely as possible.

It always worries me when I see individuals just blindly believing every TV preacher, evangelist, or pastor who comes along.  Don't get me wrong here - I am not taking pot shots at anyone.  I am simply reminding us to look beyond what we see on the surface - trust, but verify.  Not every "religious leader" is actually teaching truth.  Not every "church" is grounded in biblical truth.  Not every "religious book" written is filled with words which align with what scripture teaches. If we are to live above being deceived, we must learn the truth and then use it to evaluate all we are being taught.  This is why Jesus commended those who used the scriptures to "trust buy verify" in their lives!  They were using scripture to be more than a "verse a day" kind of religious pursuit!  They were using it to weed out the stuff they should accept as trustworthy!  We look at the measure of a man - not just his promises.  We examine the outcome of an action - not just the fact someone took action.  I haven't found one thing taught or modeled in the life of Jesus which doesn't line up with how God tells us to live our lives.  In fact, he exemplified "truth" in his words, actions, prayers, and even his death. Trust, but verify!  Just sayin!


Popular posts from this blog

What did obedience cost Mary and Joseph?

As we have looked at the birth of Christ, we have considered the fact he was born of a virgin, with an earthly father so willing to honor God with his life that he married a woman who was already pregnant.  In that day and time, a very taboo thing.  We also saw how the mother of Christ was chosen by God and given the dramatic news that she would carry the Son of God.  Imagine her awe, but also see her tremendous amount of fear as she would have received this announcement, knowing all she knew about the time in which she lived about how a woman out of wedlock showing up pregnant would be treated.  We also explored the lowly birth of Jesus in a stable of sorts, surrounded by animals, visited by shepherds, and then honored by magi from afar.  The announcement of his birth was by angels - start to finish.  Mary heard from an angel (a messenger from God), while Joseph was set at ease by a messenger from God on another occasion - assuring him the thing he was about to do in marrying Mary wa

The bobby pin in the electrical socket does what???

Avoidance is the act of staying away from something - usually because it brings some kind of negative effect into your life.  For example, if you are a diabetic, you avoid the intake of high quantities of simple sugars because they bring the negative effect of elevating your blood glucose to unhealthy levels.  If you were like me as a kid, listening to mom and dad tell you the electrical outlets were actually dangerous didn't matter all that much until you put the bobby pin into the tiny slots and felt that jolt of electric current course through your body! At that point, you recognized electricity as having a "dangerous" side to it - it produces negative effects when embraced in a wrong manner.  Both of these are good things, when used correctly.  Sugar has a benefit of producing energy within our cells, but an over-abundance of it will have a bad effect.  Electricity lights our path and keeps us warm on cold nights, but not contained as it should be and it can produce

Scrubbed Up and Ready to Go!

Have you ever considered just how 'clean' your hands really are? In nursing school, I remember this exercise we did where we rubbed hand lotion on our hands, then were told to go scrub them to practice a good handwashing technique. Most of us were going the extra mile by scrubbing back and front, in between the fingers and then even up above the wrist area. Surely our hands were clean, right? We came back to the room for the 'inspection' of our handwashing jobs only to find our instructor had turned the lights off, had a black light set up, and inspected our hands under that glowing beast! Guess what else 'glowed'? Our hands! The lotion was 'laced' with this 'dust' that illuminates under the black light, allowing each of us to see the specific areas around cuticles, under nails, and even here and there on our hands that got totally missed by our good 'handwashing' technique! What we thought was clean really wasn't clean at all. Clean