A true athlete will be disciplined in every respect, practicing constant self-control in order to win a laurel wreath that quickly withers. But we run our race to win a victor’s crown that will last forever.
1 Corinthians 9:25
When you work out to gain muscle to grow stronger, your body goes through a process. The muscles must be worked to a point where they break down. The gain happens during the process of restoration. The same can be said about our spiritual lives. Trials break us down and our faith builds during restoration.
We choose to worship instead of worry. We choose to pray instead of panic. We choose to operate in faith instead of fear. When our world is crashing down around us, we stop and talk to the One who created the world.
And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.
Too many times we will accuse God of not being faithful, when in truth, we respond out of emotion instead of commitment. Is your relationship with God a commitment, or an emotional high? Is your response to the trials you face going to be a response that stems from emotion – or from commitment?
Often times the emotions we feel as the weight of trials bear down upon us overflows in our responses to loved ones, and most notably, God. Being committed means that we trust that God has everything under control.
But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere.
If you’ve been enduring extreme back pain for months, you go see an orthopedic physician. If it’s determined that you need surgery to correct the problem, you check around for the best surgeon. When you want the best outcome, you seek out a professional with a proven track record.
God’s track record is spotless! The creator of the Universe is the professional to seek for every ailment, every circumstance, and every situation.
And one called to another and said:”Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!”
The fact that God is holy creates a problem for us when it comes to trusting Him because our only points of reference are others who we have trusted. Our only points of reference are the imperfect, who may have proved to be untrustworthy.
As believers, we have a God who embodies perfection, love, and goodness. He is fully trustworthy. Release your doubts, go all in, and allow God to be God.
And if anyone longs to be wise, ask God for wisdom and he will give it! He won’t see your lack of wisdom as an opportunity to scold you over your failures but he will overwhelm your failures with his generous grace.
When situations seem insurmountable, ask God for the wisdom to navigate them successfully. He sees your struggles and is willing to guide you every step of the way. This is where trusting Him fully is a necessity!
If God loves you perfectly, and He is perfectly good, and His wisdom is perfect, how can you not trust Him to guide you perfectly?
“And for your sake, I’m glad I wasn’t there, because now you have another opportunity to see who I am so that you will learn to trust in me. Come, let’s go and see him.”
The story of Lazarus embodies a complete illustration of trials, with a behind the scenes look at what God is doing.
Jesus receives word that Lazarus was dying. Though Lazarus is His close friend, Jesus finishes what He’s doing before moving on, and Lazarus dies.
Putting yourself in Mary’s shoes perfectly embodies how we feel in the midst of trials. But Jesus shows up, resurrects Lazarus, and explains the greater good these trials were meant for — so more would believe.
A God who loves you to the deepest depths will always work the trials you experience into something far better than you could’ve imagined.
We have come into an intimate experience with God’s love, and we trust in the love he has for us. God is love! Those who are living in love are living in God, and God lives through them.
1 John 4:16
Fear and hope are related in one way, one obliterates the other. Trust is a cornerstone of our faith in God. Without it we will be left feeling untethered.
When we find ourselves questioning our trust in God we must meditate on one thing—God IS love. God loves us with a love we cannot even fathom here on earth. He embodies the word. Would a God who loves you to that extent not work things out in your favor? To fully surrender is to find that hope you’ve been missing.