Recently I’ve had conversations with several close friends. As we’ve shared our hearts, I’ve asked, “What is God teaching you?” Each have answered, “He’s teaching me to trust Him more.” My heart resonated with that statement. No matter how long we’ve been following Jesus and no matter how “mature” we might be in Christ, the journey to trust Him takes us deeper and deeper.
I remember as a kid memorizing the words found in Proverbs 3:5-6, “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”. I remember thinking, “I can do this. I can trust God.” But then in the moments of disappointment or anxiety, I questioned, “Do I trust God?” It’s such a profound question. During a season of intense worry about my kids I remember praying, “Lord, I want to trust you, I’m just not sure I can. I have so many worries and I’m trying to do all the things you’re supposed to do, like giving you my worries and trusting you to protect and provide for those I love. My flesh is so weak. Holy Spirit, you have to strengthen my trust, because I cannot come up with enough will power to trust on my own.”
As I began to grow in my journey, I learned several practical techniques that helped me grow in trust. The battle didn’t end – I still ask the Holy Spirit to strengthen my ability to trust God more. Jesus knows the journey to trust Him is steep. This is why we echo the prayer of the Father who cried to Jesus to heal his son: “Lord I believe, help my unbelief” (Mark 9:24). So, what are the techniques I use when I’m having a “bad trust day”?
Here are my “go to” 3 for bad trust days:
I acknowledge my doubts. I’ve met too many Christians who have adopted the “fake it till you make it” philosophy in their Christian walk. I prefer to be gut level honest with God – because He already knows what I’m thinking. So, I dump! Yup. I dump out all my mistrust. I may say, “I’m disappointed in you! You could have shown up, but you didn’t.” I may say, “My fears are strangling me, and I need a little help here”. I frankly learned this from the Psalmists. They were gut level honest with God. Remember Psalm 3:7, “hit them in the jaw God. Break their teeth”. Now c’mon, you’ve prayed that yourself a few times. The great thing about God is He lets us vent in the throne room.
I quote scripture out loud that reminds me of His character. I’ve talked about emergency verses before and this is where they come in. When you are in the throes of doubt and chaos, quote those verses out loud and remind yourself that God is good! When life falls apart, Satan wants you to believe the lie that God is not actually good. We need to clobber Satan with scripture! Pick 5 emergency verses, write them on index cards, and keep them handy!
I turn on my praise music. Satan is allergic to praise. When I turn on my worship music and start worshipping God despite my feelings, Satan flees. He’s terrified of you praising Jesus Christ. No matter where I am in the world, I have my worship music on my phone. I hit my knees and start worshipping Jesus. Sometimes, my worship might be through tears, but I proclaim with the worship artists, “Lord you are good!”
Friend, I hope these tips help you. When you are struggling to trust God with some issue, lean in, acknowledge your doubts, quote scripture out loud and turn on your worship music. Jesus is in heaven cheering you on! And the Holy Spirit is in you, strengthening your faith as you cooperate with Him.
This week I’m in San Diego with our daughter who is expecting her baby any day.
How you can pray:
I am flying from San Diego to Missouri to speak at the Inspire Conference – one of my favorites. Pray for me as I prepare, for flights that arrive and leave on time, and most of all for the Holy Spirit to pour through me.
Please continue praying as I finish up one of the books I’m writing.