McLeod sat down beside me on the couch the other day with a meaningful look. With the arrival of August, he made an important announcement:
“Just 30 days ’til Alabama football.”
Now the race is really on to finish the covered patio that I was convinced would be done by now–oh, how optimistic I was back in June. However, if game-day grillin’ isn’t happening, I have devised plan B for ribs in the pressure cooker. These have become a go-to meal at our house so you Instant Pot Warriors should check them out. Plus, per tradition we’ll have something like queso in the Crock-Pot, but that’s another sore point around here. Sentimental me just parted with my old version, a lovingly re-gifted 80’s model I received at my wedding shower 23 years ago, and I’m having a few qualms about the new one.
Retiring our ancient slow cooker was kind of a big deal because it’s been a game-day staple. It still worked, but the lid was cracked and the cord looked worn. Then there’s that whole This is Us episode people keep reminding me about. So I bought a new one, and we trust that replacing it doesn’t somehow signal the end of Bama’s winning era. Pretty sure that since the old one pre-dated the 1993 – 2008 drought, it was in no way connected with team wins or losses. Sorry to disappoint my Auburn, Georgia, and A&M family members on that point.
It’s funny, though, how easily we tie our trust (and our happiness) to things like CrockPots or whether a patio gets done on time, isn’t it? One thing last month’s Trust Challenge taught me is that while I’m really good about praying over big things—entrusting the people I love and the major life challenges to my Father—I cling to the notion that I’m in charge and can control all the other details.
How do I know this is my trust issue? Because I get really grumpy when the little things don’t go my way. Then, I don’t like to admit I’ve got a bad attitude over a minor inconvenience or obstacle because surprise, it makes me look like the quirky, imperfect human that I am.
Learning in a deeper way that I can trust God with the little things as well as the big things has been a freeing revelation. What started as a morning confession in my journal that I would trust God for that day has helped me to see that all day long I’m offered chances to say, “I trust you!” to my loving Father. He NEVER leaves or rejects me. He is my safe place no matter what. Every obstacle, big or small, is an opportunity to place even the smallest details of my life into His care.
I’ve been reminded, too, that trust develops as we get to know someone, and the best way to get to know God is to study His words to us in the Bible. Think of the truths of scripture as God’s “trust fund” for us, a gift from a good Father to His children. He’s given us a wealth of wisdom, promises, and reassurances, but if we don’t know that we can access them, they might as well be a treasure buried and forgotten.
Is it time to start accessing your trust fund? These five verses below are some that build my faith and my ability to say, “Lord, I trust You!” See if they help you as well, whether you’re facing a big life challenge or just small details like undone projects and sketchy slow-cookers.
1. Trust in Him at all times, you people; Pour out your hearts to Him, for God is our refuge. (Psalm 62:8) All times. All situations. Nothing is off limits with God when we choose to pour out our hearts to Him. He can handle our tears and frustrations. He can handle are deepest regrets and failures. He promises to be a refuge for us when we choose to trust Him.
2. Trust in the Lord and do good; Dwell in the land and feed on His faithfulness. (Psalm 37:3) When you don’t know what else to do, do this! Choose to trust and do what you know to be good while God works things out on your behalf. Dwell in the land—bloom where you are planted and keep your spirit nourished through His faithfulness.
3. I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God in whom I trust.” (Psalm 91:2) Sometimes we jot in our journals. Sometimes we pray in our hearts. But sometimes we’ve got to hear ourselves say out loud what we believe inside. Declaring our trust in God has a way of galvanizing us, reminding us that we are fierce daughters of the King. Rather sing than speak? Then ring out this hymn: A mighty fortress is our God, a bulwark never failing!
4. Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight. (Proverbs 3:5-6) One of the beautiful things about the Psalms and Proverbs is that they acknowledge that for all our learning and gathering of wisdom, we will come to the end of ourselves. What we know is not enough. What we’ve learned only barely scratches the surface. But we can trust the deeper wisdom of our Father who longs to put us on the right path. That usually starts with me admitting He is God and I am not. Then, I can lean on His wisdom and His good intentions toward me.
5. You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust You. (Isaiah 26:3) This final verse is what I’m praying for myself and for you as we head into the busy back-to-school season (and yes, McLeod, it is football season, too). It’s time to dip into those trust funds! I’m praying that no matter what circumstances come our way, we will have steadfast minds that choose to focus on a trustworthy Father and that receive, in return, His perfect peace.
Are you local to Houston? Join me this fall for my class “Outfit Your Soul” at Faithbridge Church. Embrace who you are in Christ. Then, step out in courage to live with purpose, lead with grace, and love with your whole heart. Scholarships are available and registration details are here!