GUEST POST: BROOK JOY
A true story…
She was told to never walk on the Indian path, but the sisters decided to race home after they spent the day at Gerritsen Beach in Brooklyn; the forbidden path promised a shortcut. She felt quite confident in her independence (at the rough age of 12) to win the race, so she separated from her sisters and speedily began her journey. In what seemed like a moment, she was stuck; quicksand engulfed her body and she knew it was a desperate situation. She clung to the one patch of grass in reach. The sand covered her entire body, to her chin, with the exception of the one arm that clung to the grassy patch as her lifeline. She can remember the face of a neighborhood girl watching in horror from a distance. The little blonde eye-witness ran away.
A young man in his twenties came to the scene. Who was he? Did the little blonde girl send for him? It didn’t matter to her because as their eyes met, she knew he was there to help. He said: “Give me your hand.” Her eyes widened to suggest that there was no possible way that she would let go. What if he didn’t grasp her hand when she reached? What if she would sink entirely?
What other choice did she have?
She must trust. Adrenaline pumping, heart-pounding sensations radiated throughout her body as she approached the moment that took all of her internal strength and focus to accomplish. This was her crucial moment, a now or never deal. She trusted. She let go and she reached up.
He rescued her.
She remembers barely muttering the words “thank you”
as she trembled with a rush of emotion
…and continued her journey home.
She is my nearly 90 year young grandma.
God desires for His children to trust His Mighty Hand.
I’m not Alice in Wonderland, nor Dorothy in Oz. I don’t always desire adventure or want to explore. I don’t think I would’ve ventured down the forbidden trail of quicksand as my grandma attempted. The unfamiliar places of life overwhelm me. I long for assurance, security, and peace in the journey far beyond adventure and exploration. I want to victoriously overcome and not cave to the overwhelming possibilities or fears of the unknown. I’m willing to learn lessons along the way to a destination, but oh yes, I want that assurance and security!
Is it possible? This life is full of disappointment, unexpected struggles or loss, and full of hurting and sinful people who hurt others. Everyone experiences the painful, the hurtful, the heart breaks… and the result is lack of trust. It’s difficult to trust in an untrustworthy world.
I cannot trust in man alone (because there will be disappointments).
“Cursed is the one who trusts in man, who draws strength from mere flesh and whose heart turns away from the LORD.” (Jeremiah 17:5 NIV)
Nor can I trust the best provisions of man for the fulfillment of the deep longings in my heart, including that assurance and security I so much desire!
Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God. (Psalm 20:7 NIV)
I’m a child of God settling my life and heart in the palm of His Great hand.
Do I trust Him?
Jonah in the whale, Daniel in the lion’s den, Joseph in slavery and prison, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in the fiery furnace; the disciples as they watched their leader die on a cross…
I’m sure the characters felt overwhelmed and fearful, but when everything else was stripped away, what choice remained?
Trust God or not?
Job piercingly states:
Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him: but I will maintain mine own ways before him. (Job 13:15 KJV)
Be His friend unto death, or not?
The once highly favored and successful Job had all stripped from him, including the lives of his family members, his property, his health, and the loyalty of his friends. He stood falsely accused of unconfessed sin that his friends claimed must be the reason for his loss and pain. His friends didn’t trust him and didn’t encourage him. Job could’ve lost all hope. He knew that God could allow him to die, but he put his trust in God, maintained his position of integrity, and continued to plead with God. Job sought to understand God, and God granted revelation of Himself to Job.
Job’s depth and understanding came with a great price, but God chose to honor His faithful servant and doubly restore all unto him.
God is with His faithful servants in the beautiful places of deliverance, restoration, and blessing. He seeks to be honored and glorified in the lovely seasons of life.
God is with His faithful servants in the ugliest of places… in the belly of a whale, in the den of lions, in slavery and prison, in a fiery furnace, in false accusation, in grief, in loss, in illness, disappointment, and sinking sand. He wants to be trusted. He wants to be honored and glorified as He’s trusted and called upon.
In this life, can I trust God is a Healer when He hasn’t healed me or someone I love? Can I trust He answers prayers while in waiting for the answer? Can I trust He is good when the bad happens?
How can I trust Him? The only way to trust Him is to spend the time knowing Him. Faithful prayer and Bible reading is the way to the secrets of His heart. Trust cannot be built in any relationship without the time dedicated to the other person. It’s the same with God and it will be difficult to trust Him if I don’t know Him. I read in His word the sweet encouragement to call on Him in the day of trouble. I know His word on the matter; I see His heart in the matter. He wants me to call on Him in trouble … so indeed, I will!
And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me. (Psalm 50:15 KJV)
There is so much to juggle in life, why not entrust it all to His skillful hand? I stand in a place needing the peace and assurance for the future, for the lives, health, and provision for my husband, children, and other loved ones. I can only stand secure when I first let go of my fears; my trust in man; favorable circumstances; any sense of entitlement to the promises of God for having previously suffered and remaining faithful through the trials – I must let go of it all. Absolutely all of it must go, and then I can extend my hand upward to God and allow Him to reach down and rescue me from all that entangles, engulfs, and entraps me in lack of trust of Him.
I otherwise feel like I’m sinking fast in sand.
He is gentle. He is loving. He is kind. He sweetly promises and reminds that…
“The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” (Deuteronomy 31:8 NIV)
The great men and women of the Bible first grew in their faith. They developed a strong relationship with God even when they didn’t have all of the facts about what would happen as they moved forward. I love the story of Abraham when he was called to venture into unknown territory. Hebrews 11:8 says that he “obeyed and went even though he did not know where he was going.”
Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen (Hebrews 11:1) and trust is knowing the facts and odds are potentially lined up against you, but being willing to take a leap of faith anyway… because God is God. He is the Great I AM. He is trustworthy. Period.
The new seasons of life with unfamiliar territory of emotions and questions require new levels of trust, but also bring new revelation of who He is. Embrace the opportunity to know Him more and trust Him to guide.
I honestly trust my car GPS to get me to my desired destination. Likewise, God is my Guide. He knows the way through life and the secrets of life and the heart. He knows the way to eternity and He provides direction through His word. He promises to lead and guide through life and to eternal destiny. I trust He knows the best path for my life.
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 NIV)
We can make our plans, but the LORD determines our steps. (Proverbs 16:9 NLT)
He furthermore promises restoration in the next life for all of those that faithfully love, trust, and serve Him in this life. In the circumstances of this life when promises are not fulfilled, we can rest assured that He will fulfill every longing, reveal all things in truth, and reward in eternity.
I want to trust Him right here and right now, so I will seek Him… to know Him… to trust Him.
I will trust in the Mighty Hand of God. I will trust in HIM.
For such is God, Our God forever and ever; He will guide us until death. (Psalm 48:14 NASB)
How abundant are the good things that you have stored up for those who fear you, that you bestow in the sight of all, on those who take refuge in you. (Psalm 31:19 NIV)
Planting God’s Seeds of Hope
This post was written by Brook Joy. She writes articles on Faith, Life, Culture, and her personal journey with Health (IBD). Brook is a chocolate-loving wife & homeschooling mama (and a Christian for 20+ years)… planting and growing God’s seeds of hope at missionzera.com