Will You Just Trust Me?
AUGUST 2, 2019
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.” Proverbs 3:5 (NLT0
When we moved into our first little rental house with snaking sidewalks and a dandelion-dotted yard, my 2-year-old was fascinated with the back door. The door itself wasn’t anything special, but beyond its paint-chipped frame were soaring blue skies and soft green grass, a squat little sandbox and a big tall slide. And when those squeaky hinges swung open wide, our small son’s world opened wide, too.
Though Lukas wasn’t able to open the back door himself, he soon discovered that if he pounded persistently on that weary wood, I’d open the door with a playful push.
Down the hallway, there was a second door that intrigued my toddler too. However, this door didn’t lead to the great outdoors. It led to a storage closet piled high with a haphazard heap of boxes and crates.
Much to my toddler’s dismay, no amount of knocking made that closet door budge. I knew how quickly teetering boxes and careening crates could turn into a toddler-toppling-catastrophe, so I refused to turn the knob at his bidding.
Unfortunately, that closet door became a giant source of frustration for my wee one. Countless times a day, Lukas would pound on it with a tight-fisted rap. And when he’d realize his knocking was to no avail, he’d protest my response with a flush-faced wail.
Finally, one afternoon when my patience was waning and my son was sobbing, I slumped to the floor in front of that closet door and echoed my disgruntled boy’s cries.
When our wails finally turned to whimpers, I cupped Lukas’ crimson face and declared, “I love you too much to open this door!” Then, looking him in the eye, I pleaded, “Would you please just trust me?”
As my words hung heavy in the air between us, I felt a wave of conviction swell within me. You see, my toddler wasn’t the only one frustrated by closed doors; his mom was discouraged as well.
For years, I’d been asking God to open doors for me — doors of opportunity and advancement, doors of healing and gain. But God’s answer in that particular season of my life was “no.”
Little by little, I’d allowed those closed doors to open my heart to doubts:
Maybe God doesn’t care about my dreams.
Maybe God doesn’t listen to my prayers.
Maybe God isn’t good all the time.
But when I found myself sitting in a narrow hallway with a tantrum-throwing toddler on my lap and a swell of tears in my eyes, I realized the closed doors in my life weren’t much different than that tightly shut closet.
With the humility of a parent who is also a child, I finally recognized that God’s “no’s” aren’t a declaration of His displeasure, but an expression of His love.
God’s love is mighty enough to open any door and merciful enough to hold it shut. And when we remember that inarguable truth, we can admit that the closed doors in our lives don’t raise the question of God’s faithfulness; they reveal a quandary of our faith.
We may trust God to be the guardian of our souls, but will we trust Him to be the guardian of our doors as well?
It’s a question we all confront as we navigate the ever-changing landscapes of our lives. Perhaps that’s why Proverbs 3:5 advises us: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.”
It can be difficult to rest in God’s wisdom when we don’t understand His ways. But if we’re honest, our limited vision is no match for our Father’s sovereign sight. Just as my young son didn’t know what waited beyond the closet door, we can’t fully understand what lies on the other side of our prayers and pleas.
God sees the future, knows the past and directs our steps in the present with unchanging love.
All He asks of us is what I asked my son on that long-ago day in the hallway of our little rental house:
“Would you please just trust me?”
God in the covenant
By: Charles Spurgeon
“I will be their God.” Jeremiah 31:33
Suggested Further Reading: 2 Samuel 22:1-7
Child of God, let me urge thee to make use of thy God. Make use of him in prayer; I beseech thee, go to him often, because he is thy God. If he were another man’s God, thou mightest weary him; but he is thy God. If he were my God and not thine, thou wouldst have no right to approach him; but he is thy God; he has made himself over to thee, if we may use such an expression, (and I think we may) he has become the positive property of all his children, so that all he has, and all he is, is theirs. O child, wilt thou let thy treasury lie idle, when thou wantest it? No; go and draw from it by prayer.
“To him in every trouble flee,
Thy best, thy only friend.”
Fly to him, tell him all thy wants. Use him constantly by faith, at all times. Oh! I beseech thee, if some dark providence has come over thee, use thy God as a sun, for he is a sun. If some strong enemy has come out against thee, use thy God for a shield, for he is a shield to protect thee. If thou hast lost thy way in the mazes of life, use him for a guide, for the great Jehovah will direct thee. If thou art in storms, use him, for he is the God who stilleth the raging of the sea, and saith unto the waves, “Be still.” If thou art a poor thing, knowing not which way to turn, use him for a shepherd, for the Lord is thy Shepherd, and thou shalt not want. Whate’er thou art, where’er thou art, remember God is just what thou wantest, and he is just where thou wantest . I beseech thee, then, make use of thy God.
For meditation: The false gods of the Greeks and Romans were given specific individual roles; the one true God is a glorious all-rounder—omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent—the complete opposite of the false god (1 Kings 18:27,37).
Nothing but a Number
Devotions for men.com
Recommended Reading: Genesis 6:5—9:17 (especially 7:6); Luke 2:36–38
Japanese mountain climber Yuichiro Miura reached the summit of Mount Everest at age 70. George Brunstad was also 70 when he swam the English Channel. Naval officer Grace Hopper became the first female rear admiral of the United States Navy when she was 79. Margaret Haggerty completed her quest to run a marathon on each of the seven continents when she was 84.
If stories like these teach us anything, it’s that senior adults are capable of amazing things.
That was certainly true of Joshua. Even though he was probably nearing the century mark, God had a plan for him. Age didn’t matter to God. Rather than telling Joshua to rest, retire or step aside for a younger replacement, God instructed him to get to work.
Perhaps we should take a cue from God in our attitude toward older adults. From an early age most of us were taught to respect our elders. However, too often we confuse politeness for respect. What’s the difference? Politeness might include offering a hand to senior adults when they struggle with steps or making awkward small talk with aging relatives at family gatherings. Respect, however, would include realizing that with their years of challenges and experiences these adults are a rich, God-given resource.
In this age of politically correct labels, perhaps a better name for senior citizens is “ultra-experienced adults.” God entrusted Joshua with an important duty a quarter century after Joshua reached retirement age because of his vast military experience and knowledge.
Think of the older adults you know. How does God want to use them in your life? What experiences of theirs might benefit you? What life lessons have they learned that might keep you from making a bad decision? And what might you be able to learn from hearing their stories and asking for their advice?