Total Trust

“Therefore I have uttered what I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know.”  (Job 42:3b)

As we end the book of Job we also end the month of January.  January in the Northeast is cold, dreary and dismal but as it ends we can start to see the early glimpses of what will be spring and the restoring of nature.  This is much like the end of Job, a book filled with suffering and ridicule that ends in restoration and hope.  Like Job many of us experience life events, some tragic, that can create hurt in our hearts that if left to fester will eventually turn the hurt to bitterness and ultimately a “hard heart”.  This past Sunday my pastor’s sermon was just that, the hurt that grows because we have lost trust in God.  In Job 1:1 we first experience the man that Job was, “…blameless and upright, and one who feared God and shunned evil.”  Job was prosperous, disciplined and virtuous yet, evil found a way into his life.  I have to admit that if I was in Job’s place I might have responded differently than he did.  Jobs’ immediate reaction was to worship God first, he didn’t curse God although his wife suggested it and he did not have a “hard heart.”  He did mourn his losses and he even struggled with questions but in the end, he never stopped loving God or believing that God would bring him through his trials and guess what…God didn’t disappoint, but then again He never does.

Several years ago Brennan Manning wrote a book called Ruthless Trust and it is his definition of trust that I want to share today.  He writes, “Ruthless trust is the uncompromising trust that God loves you, no matter what you have done or what you may do, and that God is good, whether or not He intervenes in the midst of your pain.  It is a child-like confidence that God will never abandon you, that He is at work in your life, even when you don’t feel His presence or see His Hand.  He asks that we pray from the heaert, ‘Abba, into your hands I entrust my body, mind, and spirit and this entire day – morning, afternoon, evening, and night.  Whatever you want of me, I want of me, falling into you and trusting in you in the midst of my life.  Into your heart I entrust my heart, feeble, distracted, insecure, uncertain.  Abba, unto you, I abandon myself in Jesus our Lord.  Amen.'”

According to Manning the formula for ruthless trust is “FAITH + HOPE = TRUST”.  Faith is belief that God is; hope is believing that God will do what He has promised and trust is living with absolute confidence in the Father’s acceptance and unconditional love, and totally abandoning yourself to whatever He asks you to do, even if it doesn’t make sense.  Like Job, today think about how many things in your life might not make sense, how much wasted time you’ve spent being anxious or confused about your circumstances when if we only trusted God we would be restored (Philippians 4:6).  Sometimes there are obstacles to trusting God.  Edward Farrell in his book, Prayer is a Hunger, lists amnesia, inertia, and manana as the three greatest obstacles to trust.  He writes, “we are all subject to forgetfulness of God’s faithfulness in the past, laziness to act on the divine promise, and postponing until tomorrow what Jesus is asking of us today:  childlike abandonment in trust.”

The Book of Job is a painful read but it challenges us to give God our complete trust.  It challenged me to look within myself and recognize what obstacles are there that keep me from that “childlike abandonment” to Him.  Like myself, I hope that each of you reading this today think about the obstacles in your own life, is it your own self-esteem, insecurity, feelings of inadequacy or simply fear.  Manning writes that he feels the greatest obstacle is not believing how much you are loved, “You will trust Him to the degree that you know you are loved by Him.”

My prayer as we end Job is that we learn to understand the total love Jesus has for us, He is not looking for the perfect specimen, He is looking for the flaws…it is the flaws that allow us to be restored.

Seeking glimpses of spring,

MA

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7 thoughts on “Total Trust

  1. What a beautiful message, MA! Thank you! That word trust is always lingering around and reminding us who we are not and who God is. What struck me over the head the last two days of reading is how prideful Job was. How he questioned God’s judgment and decisions.  How often do I think I know what is best? How often do I try to “figure” out what is going on, why are things happening this way….ouch! The Lord has revealed once again the sin of pride and how it prevents us from seeing God! Pride prevents us from trusting God! Lord, remove the pride in my heart, the self righteous mind set I have been holding into for so long it almost feels as my security blanket. I lay it at Your feet. Help me take Your hand and learn to trust You, help me understand the magnitude of Your love and mercy! Grow our faith in this group, Lord! Give us a hope that can only come from You as we learn to trust You each day! In Jesus name we pray, Amen! Laying it down, BethanySent from my iPhone

  2. What you wrote today goes along so well with what I read in Exodus. God is asking Moses to do some big things; He is asking him to trust Him completely….and what does Moses do? Moses focuses on his own inadequacies and insecurities and argues with God. Don’t you think sometimes God must just get exasperated with us? But, in His loving way, God eases Moses’ mind and offers to have Aaron be his assistant. Things seem to go from bad to worse for the Isrealites, as they are punished for Moses’ confronting of Pharoah. Once again, Moses doesn’t trust but he complains. Is anyone else seeing themselves in this story? I know I am! I agree with Bethany’s prayer….Lord, help to remove “me” from the picture, and help me to focus only on the “You”. amenMorgen

  3. Thank each of you for your words on “Trust” and I love the equation : faith + hope = Trust. How priviledged I am to be reading your words each day. They offer additional wisdom as you share what God is putting on your hearts. I also agree with Bethany’s prayer and ask the Lord to do a mighty work within me so that all that remains is a reflection of Jesus. Could I have the names of those in this group so that I can add them in my daily prayers.Can’t wait for Exodus tomorrow!Blessings,Teeny

  4. Mary Ann,Yes, total trust is what we need because a partial trust will not work. Partial trust means we are not relying 100% on God but still in our own strength. Amen to everything that was said above. You girls are the best. :)In my reading today, Moses could not rely on his own strength alone. When he initially spoke to Pharaoh, the plight of the Israelites became worse. It reminded me of a poem my friend wrote, “it will get worse before it gets better.” There is something better for the Israelites, they just can’t see it yet. I highlighted all of Exodus 6:6-8 where God said:I will bring you..I will free you…I will redeem you…I will take you…I will give you…That just made my heart swell. But when Moses delivered the message to the Israelites, they didn’t listen to him. Why? Because of their discouragement. Are we sometimes too focused on our discouragement that we fail to hear and see what the God wants to do in our lives?This is what I read this morning when on my desktop calendar: “When trial comes and it’s difficult to see your way through, God will carry you above and beyond your circumstances – to a great view of a stronger you.”Lastly, I am learning that If God calls you, He will equip you. In Exodus 4:14 Eventhough God was angry with Moses for not trusting enough (that’s why he refused the assignment), God did not set him aside to look for someone else. God still used him and gave him a boost by bringing Aaron along. My God makes me smile. (Teeny, it’s nice to see you again!)Have a blessed day!G&P

  5. Wow, all of this was amazing to read and so where my heart has been lately. G&P, I can’t tell you how much I needed to read the words, “If God calls you, He will equip you.” I have been wrestling with that over and over in my mind, praying just this morning that it is not ME that has to do anything, it is JESUS IN ME that does it, I just have to be willing. Willing to do what He says, go where He says and step out of where my comfort lies and take those steps. So often I want to retreat back to the familiar, back to where I can find my daily stride in the routine of laundry and mopping. That is what is easy, other things not so much. In the end what Job saw was God. If he had never been through the trials he would not have seen, experienced God, as he did. I was reminded of the devo G&P sent last week about “Praying Through.” Pray not for God to take all the pain and the trial away, but pray to have the strength to go through. I am fighting a battle right now. One that I need strength to go through. Will God take it away? No, I don’t think so because when I fought this years before He didn’t take it away, I prayed through it. I got verses and I fought the enemy with the Word and I’m doing it again. The word “after” hit me today as well. It was after Job prayed for his friends that he was restored and his blessings were doubled from what he had previously. It was after he forgave. Forgiveness=blessings. Forgiveness is what sets us free. Have a blessed day Jesus-Girls!Brandee

  6. Brandee,Praying with you that you will set aside the ‘you’ for ‘Jesus in you.’ It is difficult because our flesh (in collusion with the enemy) always wants to get in the way. It reminded me of what our Pastor preached last Sunday in John 3:30 when John said of Jesus, “He must become greater; I must become less.” I just listened to Wendy’s vlog from Monday on Psalm 5. Bethany was right, it was very good.Praying for your “through.” <3>G&P

  7. Thanks šŸ™‚ It’s an ongoing battle that I have fought several times and always when I let my guard down and watch/read/listen to things I know I really don’t need to. It sets me on a crash collision with those mind and thought battles. Plus my confidence is at a really low point right now. I will battle through it, I keep thinking that anything worth doing is worth fighting for. I shouldn’t think it would be easy and the enemy would just sit back and let me do what God asked me to do without a fight. Renee Swope’s book is going to help me. Doing the online study and we are in chapter 3. I am soaking in every word! <3>B

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