“Trust the Lord with all your heart,
and do not rely on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
and He will make your paths smooth.”
This was one of the first verses I memorized as a child. It would come to mind often as I grew up. For a long time it was just words. But in my teen years, as my “path” became far more bumpy, uneven and painful, the verse also deepened in its meaning and reality in my life. I came to know Him more deeply as we walked that rough path together. I learned how trust-worthy God through those years together.
Fast-forward through love, marriage, starting a church, and having two little boys join our family. Then came #3. He became a great “teacher” for me.
From his first birthday, my life became a blur…often finding him in yet another life-threatening situation, or seeing him dramatically writhing on the floor as if his life was coming to an end. He had an incredibly strong will. I experimented with all kinds of methods of getting him to calm down and listen to me. I would often stand over him simply saying, “You’re not gonna win. You’re not gonna win.” Once he’d calm down a bit, I’d get on his eye-level, pull his little face close to mine, and say “look in my eyes…look in my eyes.” Of course, his little eyeballs were going everywhere except into mine. But when we finally were eye-to-eye, my words could begin to be “heard.” Soon we would be back on track and going about our day…until the next crisis. I had to be consistent with him in disrupting his strong will, but I also had to be consistent with the peace-making and love afterwards.
I think that became a life-lesson for him in learning to trust….trust that he was loved, trust that he had boundaries to live within, and trust that even when he was going down a wrong “path” the standards remained…and that he was still loved.
How do we learn to trust God? It’s not just a word. It’s not just a concept we can decide is true for us. TRUST is built. With time, through tough “bumps in the road”, through falls and bruises and choices that end up with us writhing on the floor. Mywillagainst HIS WILL. It comes through times of God orchestrating getting our attention, with our face in His Hands, Eye to eye. Until we finally let His Words sink in, andour willgives into His.
Each time we get up, look in His Eyes, hear Him…and can walk away knowing His Love goes with us, our trust in Him grows…stronger, deeper, solid. Like a child.