Learning to Trust in God

I used to be more afraid of my life.  Afraid that something would happen to my loved ones, that a tragedy would befall my family.  I watched other people go through tough times – job loss, child or adult illnesses, financial trouble, even the death of a family member.  And then I looked at my own family, with good health and relative job security, finances under control for the most part, and I wondered, “When is the other shoe going to drop?”

My prayers reflected this fear.  I was tentative, even untrusting.  They sounded like this, “I trust you, Lord, but keep my children safe from harm.  “I trust you Lord but please let my husband keep his job.” Or, “May your will be done, but help everyone stay healthy.”  I dreaded even the thought of trials and hardships.

cliffBut gradually, over time and with much prayer and personal reflection, I came to realize that I couldn’t put these conditions on God and His will for my life.  I couldn’t take up just half of the cross and try to follow him.  I remember when I finally came to this realization and the first time I changed my prayer.  I thought through all the terrible, horrible things that could happen to my children, my husband, my beloved family and friends, and I came to see that my goal, the endgame, never changed through all the possibilities.  The goal of eternity in Heaven with my Lord was still the same through sickness, poverty and death.

So my prayer changed from, “I trust you, but…” to “Thy will be done, come what may.”  I wasn’t so bold as to pray, “Bring it on!” but I did feel a freedom from the prayer tentative though at first it may have been.  In one sense, I was expecting calamity to crash down on us as soon as I prayed that prayer, but then I realized that my meager petition wasn’t stopping bad things from happening before.  I also came to see that God doesn’t want horrible things to happen to us.  Human suffering is simply a result of sin entering our world at the very beginning.  God wants to give us every good thing, “a full measure, pressed down, shaken together and overflowing…” (Luke 6:38).

Well, it’s been a couple of years now and no great catastrophe has befallen us, our house didn’t fall down nor are atrustll of us in the hospital.  And I also started thinking, from the suggestion of my friends, that maybe the other shoe has already dropped.

There are little things that I suffer through and struggle with every day – a difficult child, an overcomplicated schedule, feeling overwhelmed and under-faithed, feeling lacking in faith.  I’m not saying that something bad is not ever going to happen – my world could fall apart tomorrow – but I know that I’ll be okay with the Lord by my side.  My faith in Him will grow and I will continue to run the race to the end!

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