Trust in the LORD with all your heart,
and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
and He will make straight your paths.
I think I mentioned this scripture here recently, but this Bible verse is the favorite of both my son and my hubby. Today, for several reasons, including both natural and relationship disasters, I want to remind myself of why it is an important verse to me as well. Maybe you can relate to sometimes being discouraged, or to having an overwhelming sense of injustice when bad things “happen”, or to disagreeing with God’s plans from time to time?
I love Proverbs 3:5-6 for reminding me that things won’t always be easy to understand or explain. It dovetails with another verse that I love:
For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways My ways, declares the LORD.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are My ways higher than your ways
and My thoughts than your thoughts.
“For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven
and do not return there but water the earth,
making it bring forth and sprout,
giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater,
so shall My Word be that goes out from My mouth;
it shall not return to Me empty,
but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it (Isaiah 55:8-11)
We don’t always understand His ways. God’s plans are good and He is good but sometimes His ways make us feel bad. His ways of carrying out His plans can get pretty uncomfortable for us at times.
When I was younger, I gave God human motives to try to explain and understand my life. If something bad happened, I thought He was angry. If relationships hurt me, I thought He was trying to hurt me – or He just didn’t care. That is how humans behave. But we cannot afford to be so simple – He is NOT like us – and thank goodness!
Reading God’s Word has convinced me that He is powerful and He is good and that He doesn’t change. So, if I believe these things to be true about Him, then I must trust Him (and lean not on my own understanding). This is faith.
Paul says, “faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see” (Hebrews 11:1). In my words, faith is being confident about those things that you have put your hopes in, even when you can’t see them easily in your life. In a situation where I just don’t see any good, I can still trust with confidence that there IS good, because I trust that God’s Word has revealed what is true about Him and it tells me this: we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).
Because of His character and His promises, I can be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer (Romans 12:12), knowing that His plans are more important than mine. Of course, while I know this all to be true, sometimes it still grieves me. So I guess I have learned to be faithful in prayer and patient in affliction…I am just still working on the joy part! 😉
How about you? How have you dealt with dark events caused by terrible tornadoes, the sin of others, or your own shortcomings? Can you find the silver lining? For me, it is that even when all else fails me – I can trust in Him!