Haven't you ever wanted one? When you told your first major secret to a friend? When you needed someone who would be there for you? When you stood at the alter looking into the eyes of the one you loved? When your first born was sick and there was nothing you could do?
I want one now. But not just one. I want a million. I want a promise that my little sisters will love themselves and love Jesus. I want to know that I will see Joshua in Heaven. I want to know that there is a Heaven. I want to know that Matthew will always love me. I want to know that God will provide for us even when there is no money. I want to know that there is always good in people. I want to know that I have a purpose. I want to know that I will make it through my failures. I want to know that Samuel will be ok. I want to know that he will love and follow Jesus.
I want a promise.
But in my mind I think that if I was given promises for all the things I worry about and fear, then life would be great. I would not have worries if I had promises.
But there is a problem with this logic... you need to trust in order to believe in a promise.
(sigh) Trust. Yuck. I am NOT a fan of this word. Seriously, do I have to? Trust means I have to work. I don't want to work. I want it to be easy. I want it to be simple. If I was still 5 years old then this would have been easy. Trust was effortless when I was 5. In fact, I did not know life without it. But then I grew up. I saw all the hurt and destruction that people can do to each other (to the people that they say they love.) And "trust" was no longer an reaction; skepticism, fear, and distrust became common.
Now, in order for me to trust someone/something/ or even God I have to see proof first. Prove to me that you are worthy of my trust; then maybe I will trust you. Prove to me that you are not using me; then maybe I will trust you. Sucks to be the person who makes a mistake, cause that is all it takes to loose my trust. And good luck trying to get it back after that. I think "snowball chance in Hell" is a fitting phrase for the work it would take to regain my trust.
So, how do I trust a promise will come true? How do I trust the person making the promise? I guess there is only one person who I am looking to make me promises. (Matt is my husband but he can't promise 99% of what I am asking for).
I guess that the real issue is not trusting the promise will come true but trusting the person who is making the promise. Or even just trusting the person who has already made the promises. "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him and he will direct your paths. "(Proverbs 3:5-6) "I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord. Plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future. " (Jeremiah 29:11)
Endless verses about the goodness of God and the goodness of the plans that he lays for us. My question is...
God, I remember those dark places. I remember wondering how, if you loved me, I could be experiencing these things. God, how can I trust you when I have been hurt?
God, how can I trust you when I have been so hurt?
How can I trust that life will be good in the future? How can I trust that those I love will not experience that hurt too? How can I trust that you will prosper and not harm me? How can I trust that your plans are good? Is there even a way? I mean, other then trusting blindly.
Oh NO! That is it huh...are you asking me to blindly trust you? Please say no. I don't know if I can do that. I was never good at playing "follow the leader" as a kid (unless I was the leader). I don't know how to be a good follower.
Ok, if I don't have to follow you blindly...then how should I follow? (Must I follow? I am a pretty good leader. ) Ok, fine. I will follow. (here is where I imagine the little kid in me have my fingers crossed behind my back)
Damn. So following, which means I have to trust that the person I am behind will not walk off a cliff anytime soon. And there it is. I just walked off a cliff. Sigh. Now what? You STILL want me to follow. Really? A cliff God. A CLIFF! Did you not see it? I definitely did not. But you said to follow and I followed. Now what? What if you are in the mood for another cliff. I am trying to trust you, follow you and believe your promises. You are making this difficult.
Easy. Nope. Trust is not easy. Learning to walk was not easy either. But one cool thing about learning to walk was you only had to take one step at a time.
Hmmm.... one step at a time. Now maybe that is something I can do. I can trust God today. Would that count as a step? Would half a day count? Cause this week was filled with half-day-trusting. I think so. Babies who are learning to walk will eventually take three steps in a row. Then 5, then 15....and then maybe trip and have to start over. But eventually a trip or fall does not mean that we are starting from the beginning with our trust; more like picking up where we left off.
Maybe tonight...I will take a step: to believe a promise, to follow and not lead, to trust.