I have been thinking a lot about the topics of trust and faith. The two are so closely intertwined. Trust in God is needed to grow faith because it allows our faith to become personal. I’ve come to realize, however, that faith and trust may not be identical. You see it’s one thing to accept that an Almighty God is capable of anything because of His resume, whereas it’s another to believe He is personally controlling YOUR life.
This is where we can look to the father of our faith, Abraham. He indeed was a man after God’s heart but, like all of us, had a few bumps and detours along the way. His trust in God began to flourish when he believed that God was capable of not just miracles but miracles in HIS life. For example Abraham (then Abram) was told by God that he would have decedents as numerous as the stars in the sky (Genesis 15:5) even though he and his wife were advanced in years and still childless.
Even before God came through on His promise Abram believed the LORD, demonstrating his FAITH (Genesis 15:6). But he later succumbed to his wife Sarai’s suggestion to have a child with her servant Hagar since Sarai was still barren. (We always run into problems when we try to hurry God along). Why did Abram do this? Well it could have been a result of timeline discrepancy. In human minds it is difficult to grasp that God has a much different schedule than we do and is in NO HURRY. His timing for the fulfillment of promises is what will come to pass, and no amount of us intervening will make things happen any faster. TRUST in God means trust in HIS timing.
Abraham (God changed Abram’s name in Gen 17:5) learned this lesson the hard way when God revealed that the promised child was not Hagar and Abraham’s son Ishmael (human intervention) but a child to be born at a subsequent date.
God later showed His faithfulness by the miracle child Isaac’s birth. Abraham’s faith increased AND he began to TRUST God more with his life. This then created an obedient heart in Abraham. The more trust we have in God’s character, the more likely we are to be obedient to His leading. This concept is shown in the life of Abraham at a later time when God tests his faith and asks him to sacrifice his son Isaac. At this point he does not hesitate to submit his will to God. No, Isaac does not actually die but the point is God revealed Abraham’s heart and brought to the surface a new level of TRUST. Abraham was WILLING to obey God even when He didn’t understand, because he knew that God would keep His promise of descendants. Abraham reasoned that God would simply raise Isaac from the dead in order to fulfill His word (Hebrews 11:19). His TRUST in God’s ability to work in his life was strong.
Despite different circumstances our relationship with God could look a lot like Abraham’s. First we look at God’s resume and deduct that He is clearly qualified for the position of sovereign ruler (Genesis 1). Next we believe in God’s character: meaning the nature of God (loving, faithful, just, merciful, compassionate) based on what we know His is like in Scripture (Psalm 145:8). Finally we transfer those beliefs (our faith–Hebrews 11:6) to an understanding of how God may work in our own lives and begin to trust Him personally.
If you haven’t already developed a TRUST between you and your Heavenly Father it would be a wonderful time to start. God cares for you: Matthew 6:26. He has equipped you: Ephesians 1:3. There is nothing too difficult for the LORD. Take a step of faith and TRUST Him to guide the way.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.”
To look up any of these Scripture verses here is a link to Bible Gateway: http://www.biblegateway.com