I always find it interesting how God chooses, or more specifically the time he chooses, to deal with me on the issues in my life. Let me give you a current example. This past Sunday morning I woke around 4 am with the overwhelming sense that I needed to repent. You are probably wondering what exactly I felt I needed to repent of. Well, I was hit with the realization that I have been functioning, leaning upon, and trusting in my own abilities more than I have been in God’s. This reality was both shocking and sobering.
Now before you get all pious and holier than thou, try and remind yourself we are all in the same boat floating down the same stream. Human nature being what it is, left to our own devices, we will inevitably begin relying on our own abilities rather than on God’s ability. Think about it, we do it all the time. When we find ourselves confronted with a new and unfamiliar situation we quickly look to God for guidance. Oh, we are quick to pray, and quick to search out his will in the Word. We become praying machines. However, given time and familiarity we slowly begin to get comfortable and simply run on reflex. We know the routine, and we know exactly what needs to be done. Been there, done that, excuse me while I take care of business. Gradually we begin to rely less on God and more on our experience, talents, and expertise. Starting to sound a little bit familiar?
Ultimately what this boils down to is we have a trust issue. I am not saying that we do not trust God, but rather we are disproportionately trusting in ourselves. Nothing new under the sun when it comes to our extravagant self-trust. You can see example after example in the Bible where individuals, with the best of intentions, figured they knew how to get things done. Case in point, Abraham and Sarah’s decisions leading up to the birth of Ishmael in Genesis 16. Don’t judge them too harshly, because we tend to do the exact same thing. That is why I believe God left verses like Zechariah 4:6 for us.
“Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,” Says the Lord of hosts.
Obviously this was spoken specifically to Zerubbabel, but there is definitely a universal truth here. Just like Zerubbabel, when we encounter obstacles in our daily lives they are best handled by the Holy Spirit. That is not to say we take the limp glove approach and simply “let go and let God”. God will most assuredly use, and inform, our experiences, talents, and expertise, and as such, accordingly place demands upon us. In other words we have an active part to play. A part grounded in faith and trust in God, such that we believe his Spirit will direct and guide us as we take life head on. It will not be by your strength, ability, or expertise, but by God’s directing and empowering.
After the initial shock of my predicament, I chose to pray and repent. When I finally did get out of bed – it was 4 am people – I went to God’s Word and found a few scriptures pertaining to trusting in God. They were a helpful reminder that it is in God I place my trust, and not in my strength, or the strength of man. I have included them (in no particular order) for your enjoyment and edification. God bless.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6
“Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him.” Psalm 2:12
“Behold, God is my salvation, I will trust and not be afraid.” Isaiah 12:2
“It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.” Psalm 118:8
“Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, and whose hope is the LORD.” Jeremiah 17:7
“I will love You, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised; So shall I be saved from my enemies.” Psalm 18:1-3
“He who trusts in his own heart is a fool….” Proverbs 28:26
“Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in You. In God (I will praise His word), In God I have put my trust; I will not fear. What can flesh do to me?” Psalm 56:3
“To You, O Lord, I lift up my soul. O my God, I trust in You; Let me not be ashamed; Let not my enemies triumph over me.” Psalm 25:1-2
“And we have such trust through Christ toward God. Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think of anything as being from ourselves, but our sufficiency is from God.” 2 Corinthians 3:4-5
“Trust in Him at all times, you people; pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us.” Psalm 62:8
“But it is good for me to draw near to God; I have put my trust in the Lord God, that I may declare all Your works.” Psalm 73:28