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Trust: assured reliance on the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone or something. (webster.com)
Who better to have an assured reliance on than God? He is the ultimate example of perfect character, ability, strength, and truth. We say we trust Him, but do we really? Webster’s dictionary describes trust as an assured reliance. Are we in a constant state of assured reliance upon His goodness? Specifically, when hard times come, do we see those times as good? During difficult times, we feel uncomfortable, perhaps even miserable, and we often ask God to take away the difficulties. But what if God is using that difficulty for your good?
The Key to the Winds
I recently read a wonderful parable, written by Mark Guy Pearse, in the devotional Streams in the Desert by L.B. Cowman. The parable begins with the narrator complaining about the horrid east wind, which causes clouds of dust and aggravates him. As a result, an angel presents the narrator with the key to the winds. With this power, the man can control the wind in whatever manner he chooses, so he decides to cease the east wind from blowing.
However, the man soon realizes his folly when trying to choose another wind in its place. He says to himself, “Who knows what mischief I may bring about? How do I know what the fields want! Ten thousand things of ill may come of this foolish wish of mine.” The man becomes aware of his own lack of understanding and God’s ultimate wisdom. In the end, God says to the man, “Didst thou not know, my child, that my kingdom ruleth over all?” The narrator replies, “Over all, my Lord?…then it is not safe for me to murmur at anything?” The Master responds, “My child…thy only safety is, in everything, to love and trust and praise.”
Indeed, as Psalm 103:19 declares, “his kingdom ruleth over all.” God is the only one with the ability and the wisdom to use everything for good, for He rules over all. We, as mere humans, might think that we understand something, but His understanding is always greater. Therefore, we must learn to trust Him completely in everything — even in adversity.
Trust God’s Goodness
God says that He works everything for the good of those who love Him (Romans 8:28). Everything. This means that he even uses sickness ultimately for your good. He uses pain and suffering and heartache ultimately for your good. Along with joyful times of celebration and peace, He uses times of disaster and frustration and tragedy for your good. You might not see it now. You might not see it next month, or next year, or in ten years. But believe it; God’s Word is true! Many times, God allows us to look back and understand how a particular struggle actually prepared us for a blessing. But even if you don’t understand during this lifetime, trust God anyway.
We all go through times of adversity. As a close friend of mine says, don’t pull away from it. Don’t wish away the struggle that you are encountering; rather, pray through it. Ask God to show you the lesson that He wants you to learn. What is worse than going through a difficult time? Going through that time and learning nothing from it!
More Verses to Ponder
My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations [various trials]; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.
I Peter 1:7
That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:
I Corinthians 2:5
That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.
And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.
Streams in the Desert
Streams in the Desert by L.B. Cowman is a beautiful devotional, filled with scripture and stories to help those going through difficult times. I strongly recommend this devotional. God has used it to help me tremendously through the past few months as I’ve struggled with difficult circumstances. If interested, you may purchase your own copy here or learn more about this devotional here.