Throughout the Bible we are
exhorted again and again to trust in the Lord. We are warned
againts trusting in princes, in riches, or in ourselves; for
all such trust is vain. Trusting in the Lord is represented as
being safe, as blessed, and as producing very desirable
results. In it is our blessed hope, our strength, our safety,
and our help.
But what does trust mean? It does not mean
carelessness or indifference. Just to let things go and say,
"Oh I guess it will come out all right," is not trusting. Just
drifting heedlessly with the tide is not trust. Neglect is not
trust. Trust is something positive. It is a real something,
not a mere happen-so or maybe-so. It is a definite attitude of
soul and mind, a realization of our own need and of God's
suffiency. It is the reaching out and anchoring of ourselves
The soul who really trusts is not driven about
by every wind. The waves beat againts him as they beat againts
the anchored the anchored ship, but they can not dash him upon
the rocks: for he who trust in God is strong, because he has
the strength of God.
Trust does not mean shutting our eyes to facts.
There is no such thing as "blind faith." Trust looks at things
as they are. It sees the dangers that threaten, and assesses
them at their true value. It sees the nedd, and does not try
to disguise it. It sees the difficulties, and does not
discount them. But seeing all this, it looks beyond and sees
God, its all-sufficient help. It sees him greater than the
needs or the dangers or the difficulties, and it does not
shrink before them.
There is no fear in trust: the two are
opposites. When we really fear, we are not fully trusting.
When we trust, fear gives way to assurance. Fear is
tormenting, How many there are who are constantly agitated by
fear! They fear the devil, trials, temptation, the wind,
lightning, burglars, and a thousand other things. Their days
are haunted by fear of this thing or that. Their peace is
marred and their hearts are troubled. For all this, trust is
the cure. I do not mean to say that if you trust, nothing will
ever startle you or frighten you, or that you will never feel
physical fear in time of danger; but in such times trust will
bring to us a conciousness that the Lord knows and cares, and
that his helping presence is with us.
When John Wesley was crossing the Atlantic
Ocean from England to America to become missionary to the
Indians, the ship on which he was sailing encountered a
terrible storm. It seemed that those on board would be lost.
Many were much alarmed and were in deep distress. Wesley
himself was one of this number. In the midst of the storm his
attention was attracted to some Morovians who sat calmly
undisturbed by the dangers about them. Wesley greatly wondered
at their untroubled appearance. He inquired why it was. Their
reply was that they were trusting in the Lord and that they
had in their soul the conciousness of his protecting presence
and care. They felt no fear because there was nothing
threatening that a Christian had need to fear. Mr Wesley did
not have such an experience, but what he learned from the
simple-hearted people caused him to seek a similar experience.
There is no worry in trust. When we worry about
anything, we have not committed it to God. Trust takes away
the anxiety. So many people use up a large portion of their
energy in worry. There is always something troubling them.
Their days and nights are full of anxiety. Worrying becomes a
fixed habit with them. Peace and calmness and assurance find
but little room in their lives. The cure for all this is
trust. Trust brings confidence. Trust whispers to our souls
that there is no cause to worry. It tells us that God holds
the helm of our vessel. It bids us to be of good courage,
assuring us that God is our refuge and strength, that our
lives and all are in his hands, and that he will work out for
us the things that are best.
O soul, stop worrying and trust. It is so much
better. If you find yourself worrying, stop right there. Take
your eyes off the things that trouble you; look up, and keep
looking up till you see God and his infinite care for you.
Remember that when you worry you are not trusting, and that
when you trust you are not worrying. Worry depresses,
discourages, and weakens. It never helps us in any way. It is
always a hindrance to us. God wants to bring into our lives a
peaceful calm like that of a summer evening. He would have us
without anxiety, as care-free as the birds or the lilies. It
is trust that brings us this experience. Will you not trust?
"Casting all your care on him; for he careth for you."
There is no murmuring in trust. When all is
trusted into God's hand, it brings to us a feeling of
satisfaction concerning God's dealings with us. We can sing
from our hearts, "God's way is best; I will not murmur." When
we trust it is easy to praise. When we trust, the heart is
full of thankful appreciation. If you are inclined to murmur,
it is because you do not trust.
There is no feeling of bitterness when things
do not go as we think they should, if we are trusting.
Bitterness comes from rebellion, and there is no rebellion in
trust. Trust can always say, "Not my will, but thine, be
In trust there is peace, the peace of God which
passeth understanding. There is calm in the soul of him who
trusts. There is no doubt in trust, for doubt is swallowed up
in assurance, and assurance brings calmness and peace.
Trustings brings confidence. It permits us to
see God in his true character. It causes us to realize the
greatness and tenderness of his love. It gives us a
conciousness and tendernes of his love. It gives us a
conciousness of his might, and through it we are sheltered
under his wings. By it our enemies lose their power, our
dangers, our terrors. We have a conciousness of safety, and
that brings rest. He has said, "Ye shall find rest unto your
souls." He who trusts finds this soul-rest. God has not given
us turmoil and trouble. He has said "In me ye shall have
peace"; and again, "My peace I give unto you." Are not these
precious promises? Are they true in your life? God means that
they shall be. Trust will make them real to you. They never
can be real until you learn to trust. Trust is the root that
upholds and nourishes the tree of Christian life. It is trust
that causes it to blossoms and to bring forth fruit, and the
more fully you trust, the greater and richer and more profuse
will be the fruits of your righteousness.
I have told you something about trust, but I
now wish to speak of some other things that belong to trust,
Trust implies submission. Very often God fails to do things
for us because we do not permit him to. We want to plan for
ourselves. We want things to be done in the way that seems
best to our finite wisdom.
Too many of us are like a woman whose husband
recently said that they had often gone driving together, that
their horse would sometimes become frightened, and that when
it did, his wife would also become frightened and would almost
invariably seize the lines. Thus, he would have to manage both
his wife and the horse, making his task doubly difficult.
How many of us are just like that woman! When
anything threatens, we became alarmed and try to help God. We
feel that it is not safe to leave all in his hands and let him
manage the circumstances. Our failure to submit to him often
complicates matters, and it is harder for him to manage us
than it is to manage the difficulties. To trust God means to
keep our hands off the lines. It means to let him have his way
and do things as he thinks best. It may be a hard lesson to
learn, but you will hinder God until you learn it.
"It is God which worketh in you both to will
and to do of his good pleasure" (Phil 2:13). If your life is
submitted to him, he will work in you to will as well as to
do. He will help you do the planning as well as the working
out. He will aid you in the choosing, no less than in the
doing. If you can not submit to him thus, you have not reached
the place where you can trust. You must first learn to take
your hands off yourself and off circumstances; then trust will
be natural and easy. How can you trust him if you are not
willing for him to do just as it pleases him? When you have
submitted all and he has his way fully with you, then the
blessed fruitfulnes of trust will come in your life.
Trust also implies obedience.It means working
with God to produce the results. We can not sit down and fold
our hands in idleness and expect things to work themselves
out. We must be workers not shirkers. The man who prays for a
bountiful harvest but prepares no ground and plants no seed
will pray in vain. Faith and works must go together. We must
permit God to direct our efforts and command our efforts. We
must be willing to work when he wants us to work and in the
way he wants us to work. Our attempts to trust will amount to
nothing if we are not willing to obey. Right here is the
secret of many people's trouble; they are willing to obey so
long as the thing commanded is what they themselves would
choose, but when it is otherwise they are not so ready. Our
obedience must be full and willing, or we can not trust.
Trust implies patience. Even God can not work
everything out immediately. We are told that "ye have need of
patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might
receive the promise"(heb 10:36). So many times we want the
answers to our prayers right away. If they do not come thus,
we grow impatient and think God is not going to answer. There
is no use trying to hurry the Lord; we shall only hinder him
if we do. He will not work according to our plans, but
according to his own. Time does not matter so much to the
eternal One as it does to us.
A brother once came to the altar in a meeting.
In telling his trouble he said, "When I want anything done, it
has to be done in a hurry," Many other people can not be
patient and wait, They want it now. This is a great hindrance
to their faith. The Psalmist says, "Rest in the Lord, and wait
patiently for him" (Ps 37:7). We are not only to wait
patiently for him to work his purpose, but we are at the same
time to rest in him. Some people can wait, but they can not
rest at the same time. They are uneasy and impatient; they
want to hurry the Lord all the time. The result usually is
that their faith does not last very long. You must add
patience to your faith to make it effective. If you really
trust, you can be patient. It may not always be easy, but the
more perfect your trust, the easier it will be to be patient.
When Luther was summoned to meet the diet for
trial on a charge of heresy, his friends, fearing for his
life, tried to persuade him not to go; but declared that he
would go even if there were as many devils there as there were
tiles on a housetops. He trusted God, and that trust gave him
an unwavering courage. Three Hebrews trusted God, and the
fiery furnace could not even singe their garments. Daniel
trusted God, and the hungry lions could not touch him. Many
thousands of others have trusted God with similar results.
But trusting God is an active, positive thing.
A passive submission or surrender to cicunstances is not
trust. Trusting the Lord to save means to definitely rely on
him to do it; to confidently expect that he will do it. This
leads directly to the confident trust that he does do it. It
brings the conscious assurance that it is an accomplished
fact. We are not left to doubt, to hope, or to guess; but we
have a positive trust that brings a positive results.
The same is true of sanctification. A positive
faith brings a positive experience; and so long as our faith
remains positive, the experience remains positive. It is only
when faith begins to waver and doubts appear that the
experience becomes uncertain. If you will maintain a positive
faith, God will take care of your experience. Here lies the
secret of continous victory. There maybe conflicts, but faith
is the foundation of sure victory.
Trusting the Lord for healing means more than
refusing to employ a physician and to take drugs. People who
do not trust God at all often refuse to use drugs. They may at
no time during their sickness really exercise an act of faith
for healing. They simply surrender to existing conditions and
hope that it will come out all right. In many such cases
nature will overcome the disease and the person will recover.
The "prayer of faith" however is positive; it saves the sick;
it brings healing. Sometimes the sick person, because of the
mental effects of his sickness, is not able to exercise faith;
but when he is able, faith will be an active, positive thing
with him, if the desired results are to follow.
It is safe to trust in the Lord. Isaiah says,
"I will trust and not be afraid"(Isa 12:2). That is the way
God wants us to trust. He would have us be confident in him.
But sometimes we get to looking at circumstances, and they
loom up so threateningly before us that in spite of ourselves
we tremble and shrink before them. We believe that God will
take care of us and help us, but we can not quiet our fears.
Our feelings are very much as they are when we stand just
outside the bars of the cage of a ferocious wild beast. We
know it can not reach us; we know we are safe from those
powerful teeth and claws; but still we can not help having a
feeling that we should not have were we somewhere else. When
he comes to our side of the cage, we shrink involuntary, but
still we trust the iron bars and do not run away.
The Psalmist tells us what to do when we have
such fears. "What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee" (Psa
56:3). Still keep trusting. God will not chide you for the
fears yopu can not help, but only for those that come from
unbelief. Trust in God. It is the safest thing you have ever
done; and he will never fail you.