Learning to Trust God

It was a glorious day when I made a decision to trust Jesus as my Savior. After the decision I had a deep settled peace. I knew that my eternal destiny was settled and that I was truly a child of God.

However, I soon realized the decision to follow Christ was creating a whole new paradigm for living. Before, my life was all about me, my needs and what I wanted. Now I was being called to let go of my life and trust God with all of my dreams, plans and goals.

Letting go of a self-centered life is not an easy thing. To be completely honest, I still struggle with giving God complete control. There is something about the flesh that wants to control and be in charge.

It’s an issue of trust. I think most believers struggle with this. We may give verbal agreement that we trust God, but when it comes down to crunch time, we had rather worry or take matters into our own hands than give God control.

Why do I choose at times not to trust God? He has never failed me nor allowed anything to come in my life that was eventually for my benefit. As I have pondered this question, I discovered a recurring pattern that keeps me from relinquishing control and fully trusting Him. It is called spiritual indifference.

Spiritual Indifference
Spiritual indifference is a gradual thing that happens, but left unattended it quickly becomes drifting. We wake up one day and realize that we have drifted away from God. One of the problems with spiritual drifting is you never drift upward, always downward. Spiritual indifference creates a downward spiral that sends you away from intimacy with the Father.
Spiritual indifference is a result of several factors, but I think its root cause can be traced to neglecting personal fellowship and worship.

Early in my Christian life I did the daily devotional thing because I was told it was something I ought to do. My goal was to get it done so I could check it off my list.
That was a big mistake. My indifference kept me from getting the spiritual nourishment I needed. I thought the Sunday sermon would be enough to carry me through the week. The only problem with that is I hardly ever remembered what the sermon was about on Monday. I found myself spiritually enemic.

Trust is only developed by spending quality time with someone. If that is true in building human trust, then its reasonable to assume it’s also true with getting to know and trust God.

When your devotional time becomes a priority rather than an obligation, you develop a longing to know God and develop spiritual intimacy. As you expectantly read through the scripture, you get to know the character of God. The more you know and understood His character the more you realize you can trust Him with your life. Surrender becomes a positive word in your life rather than something negative. Surrender no longer means you are going to lose or give up something, but it becomes the door to knowing and trusting God. Your spiritual indifference turns into a new level of trust.

Bottom Line
Spiritual indifference is the doorway to drifting away from God. Left unattended it can lead to indecision, doubt, worry and fear. But it’s an easy fix; it just takes courage and deciding to be intentional about regular fellowship with God. It’s making a decision to pursue God.

Remember, God loves you as His child. He accepts you and He desires to pour His love and His very life into you so that you will manifest the “sweet aroma of Him in every place..” ( 2 Cor. 2:14).

“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” (Ephesians 2:10 NLT)

Stewardship of the Mind

During most of my Christian life nearly every sermon or lesson I heard on the subject of stewardship had to do with money. So to me, spiritual stewardship was about our relationship to money. It wasn’t till years later that I realized that our relationship to money was only a part of spiritual stewardship. Biblical stewardship relates to every area of our life.

Giving money, reading your Bible and regularly meeting with believers is just part of our spiritual stewardship. I have met numerous believers who were tithers and faithful church members but their lives were a mess. I think part of the reason is they neglected the necessity of being a good steward in all areas of their life.

One of the major areas of neglect is in the area of setting our mind. Our mind is a wonderful gift from God. Our mind has the ability to create, reason, compute and to dream great things. When we become a follower of Christ our life changes and we have a brand new nature (2 Cor. 5:17), but our mind needs to be developed to think consistent with our new nature. Theologically, that’s called the act of sanctification. It is up to us to be a good steward of our mind and learn to think with the mind of Christ ( 1 Cor. 2;16). If we don’t intentionally set our mind upon truth, then our mind will naturally go the way of the flesh and the culture. The Scripture admonishes us to set our mind on things above in Colossians 3.

In this devotional I want to address four hindrances to good stewardship of our mind.

Worry – Worry begins with little things, things that seem insignificant. But if those little worries are left unchecked a pattern of worry will develop, and soon worry becomes a way of life. As a follower of Jesus, there are many reasons for us to avoid falling into the worry trap. First of all, if God takes care of the flowers and the birds, He will take care of us. (Matthew 6:25-34) Also, the Scripture tells us to be “anxious for nothing” in Philippians 4. Worry is our acknowledgement that we don’t believe what God says applies to us. We must learn to bring everything to God in prayer and trust Him to give us wisdom and strength to face every issue of life. Bottom line, you can choose to worry or you can choose to trust God.

Indifference – This is a slippery slope and a very serious place to be as a committed follower of Christ. Indifference is tied to the principle of fence sitting. For some it is a safe place to be, but the decision to be indifferent is really based on fear. The Bible speaks about indifference in the book of Revelation when it refers to the church of Laodicea. Jesus said, “Because you are neither cold nor hot I will spit you out of my mouth. “ (Rev. 3) The Scripture teaches anything less than radical trust in God is lukewarm. When we are indifferent in our commitment to Christ it affects every other area of our life. We become indifferent about our relationships, about opportunity, our job, and about hard decisions we need to make. Indifference is a choice of the mind. If you are a fence sitter, get off the fence and get back in the game.

Indecision – Motivational speaker Jim Rohne said, “Indecision is the thief of opportunity.” I can’t tell you how many times that indecision has caused me to miss an opportunity to share my faith or give comfort and care to someone who needed an encouraging word. It has also cost me to miss out on a business opportunity or two. Indecision sometimes causes us to over-think a situation and causes us to not trust the voice of God. Is your indecision based on fear or a lack of wisdom?

Doubt – Doubt is tied to indecision and fear. We ought to be cautious and careful to weight our decisions with logic, but you can’t let doubt take over your life. Once doubt sets in you doubt the past, the present, and then the future. This is where setting your mind on truth is essential. When you surrender your rights and expectations to the Lord and begin to rest in Christ’s love, your legitimate doubts will become a red flag and your unfounded doubts will flee. The Scripture says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding and He will direct your paths.” (Proverbs 3:5)

Proper stewardship of the mind begins by giving our worry to God, trading in our indifference for positive faith, then casting our indecision and doubt aside by putting our trust in God.