When I first considered pushing back the September them of Trust for the CNY Wesleyan Women Ladies Retreat theme of You Make Me Bold, I thought they’re a perfect pair. So are the original October and November themes of Abundance and Gratitude.
Trust Makes Us Bold
When we read stories of men and women who were bold for God, we often see the trust that emboldened them.
Trust is a choice. As is acting on it.
When God called Moses to an impossible task, Moses wasn’t sure about who God is, or about himself. But he chose to heed the voice from the burning bush. Many years before, his mother had chosen the uncertainty of setting her son afloat in the Nile over the certain death of a Hebrew baby boy at that time in Egypt.
Caleb and Joshua saw the same wealth of the land to which God sent His people, and the same established, powerful peoples. It didn’t matter if the land truly had been filled with giants that made them look like grasshoppers; they knew God would accomplish the impossible task of conquering the land He promised.
Scripture is full of examples of victories of trust, as well as the foolishness of relying on our finitude to accomplish, and the consequences of backing away from the task or challenge in front of us.
From Rahab’s limited understanding of a powerful God inspiring her to protect Israel’s spies in Jericho, to Isaiah’s assertion that we will live in peace and confidence as we focus on God instead of lesser things, Scripture shows that walking with God is a matter of choosing trust in THIS moment. We are secure because we can’t live in the past or the future; we live NOW, and God is with us, no matter what our moments hold.
Trust Isn’t Magic
While the Bible relates many stories of magnificent victories achieved through trust, and miraculous rescues of His faithful, it also shows that God’s provision and protection don’t always look and feel like we’d want them to.
Trusting God doesn’t mean we will never suffer.
David spent a season under pursuit by Saul, and had other enemies as king. Many of Jesus’ most faithful followers were tortured, imprisoned, or executed. They didn’t live lives of external peace, but found inner peace knowing their ultimate salvation was assured, and God would be glorified through whatever suffering they endured.
It’s a perspective we struggle with.
It would be easier for me to trust a God who rewards me with happiness, ease, and comfort. I’m terrified of deeper intimacy with a holy God, forged in the fire of suffering.
It goes against my nature to give myself completely in trust. It goes against human nature. From the first two people in the Garden, we’ve found it hard to choose complete, healthy submission to the God who created us.
So, how do we set ourselves free from the fear and selfishness that hold us back from true peace and joy?
We start by choosing it. Even when we don’t feel it.
We choose to act on it. Even with our knees knocking, and despite the possible temporal consequences.
But how do we walk in it?
Reading, studying, and meditating on God’s Word are crucial to our understanding of God. We need to remind ourselves of the realities of God. His holiness, justice, faithfulness, and love. He keeps His promises. He didn’t promise us an easy journey, but a worthwhile one with a destination beyond our ability to imagine. He promised to be with us always.
We need to speak Truth to ourselves, and reject the lies that distract and overwhelm us.
Trust sees beyond our circumstances to our ultimate salvation and healing. It sees beyond our limitations to our infinite God. The reality of what lies beyond what we can see, hear, or touch empowers us to take on all we face here and now. With boldness. And the peace of confidence in God.
Our October Verses
Our suggested memory passage for October is Isaiah 26:3-4. Use the translation of your choice.