Do you ever struggle to trust God? That’s where I was; wanting to more fully trust but lacking. Sometimes God has to get our attention different ways before we’ll listen. He got my attention on a 3 day beach trip. It was a confirmation to trust God. That was the start of my journey to better understand how to lean on Him and trust him more deeply.
I knew I needed rest and more than just sleep. I needed rest for my soul. The timing was right so I decided to slip away to tend to the part of me that was often most easily forgotten: the tending and carrying for of my soul.
Questions and uncertainties loomed in every corner of my life, and the weight of the world felt like it was crushing the air out of me. As it does when you are low on oxygen, I found it hard to think clearly, and my emotions could not be trusted.
A friend would ask a genuine, “How are you?” and I was hesitant and would avoid answering for three reasons: first, I didn’t want to give voice to the feelings that clamored for reality and call what wasn’t as if it was. Secondly, I wasn’t sure I could trust my emotions to give an accurate portrayal of my reality. Thirdly, I feared the weight of my current tsunami of circumstances would be too much and scare others away.
A few days of respite and quiet time communing with the Lord was desperately in order. And the place I most easily connect with Him? The beach.
Confirmation to Trust God
It wasn’t easy going at first. It’s hard for this do-er, this achiever, to still my mind and rest in the moment. As I prayed over the concerns in question, it was as if I sensed the Lord saying, “We’ll get to that.” “But Lord,” I responded, “What about…?” “We’ll get to that too.”
That was hard for me to know what to do with…I like to know how we’re going to get from point A to point B. Tell me what to do, and I’ll do it. But God does not operate within a box or within my timetable.
A friend was praying while I was away and sent a brief but timely message. It was a confirmation to trust God. She urged me not to reply, as she wanted this to be a time of rest and renewal, not responsibility. “Trust is coming up every time I pray. He is developing trust in you, and soon, no matter what, you will declare trust in Him and answers will come…He truly is working all things for your good.”
“For there is no time of testing you will ever experience which others have not likewise faced. But God is forever faithful to you and he will not permit you to be tested beyond your limit. The test is but an opportunity to trust him fully, for in every trial you can discover the way of escape for which he has provided for you, so that you may be empowered to go through it” (1 Corinthians 10:13 TPT).
Her message confirmed what I knew in my heart that God had been saying all along: “Trust me.” In fact, He confirmed it several different ways in my three short days away.
Struggling to trust God
Have you ever wanted to trust God more fully, but didn’t know what was standing in your way blocking you?
Maybe trust is hard for you because you want to maintain control.
Or maybe trust is difficult for you because you’ve been let down by people, or maybe you’ve let yourself down.
Maybe you’ve struggled to trust God because trust requires slowing down, feeling, and waiting, rather than rushing ahead and rushing through.
Or perhaps, you’ve been afraid to trust for fear of finding out that maybe God isn’t who He said He is or wouldn’t do what He said He would do?
That’s where I was, wanting to more fully trust but lacking. What wasn’t lacking was my pain. It assaulted me from every angle. How would we get through the indecision and heartache? What was God up to? What would I do?
Intimacy with God comes through suffering
A quote from Josie Siler came to life for me in those days of desperate seeking:
“God is God and His ways are best, even when we don’t understand them. There are things to learn in the midst of suffering. There’s an intimacy with God that is only developed through suffering. If we can learn to trust God, even when we don’t understand Him, great things will happen. God’s word tells us that we will be filled with glorious, inexpressible joy.”
What would I do? I would choose to more intentionally trust God.
“When I am afraid, I will put my trust in you” (Psalm 56:3).
Depression doesn’t have to become a permanent part of life.
There is hope.
Hope Prevails: Insights From a Doctor’s Personal Journey Through Depression and the companion Hope Prevails Bible Study help the reader understand how depression comes to be, recover their joy, reclaim their peace, and re-establish their true identity, while knowing their worth, remembering their secure destiny, and being confident that nothing separates them from God’s love.
“In my 30 years as a practicing psychotherapist, I’ve never read a book that suggests more helpful and concrete ways of overcoming depression as “Hope Prevails.” This book goes a major step beyond what therapy accomplishes by helping us maintain our hope. Dr. Bengtson’s own struggle with depression is carefully woven into her well-credentialed research on causes and etiology of depression. Then she leaves us with a powerful prescription for finding relief and peace. The message is clear and never loses its power. Too often I begin a book and within the first three chapters have read what the rest of the book struggles to support. I’m grateful for this book and the many who will get relief reading it and following her prescriptions. And, how helpful to those with someone in their life dealing with depression.” ~ Pat Wenger, M.A., LPC, MFT