She didn’t expect life to turn out like this. For the last few years she’d grown in her trust in and relationship with God. She’d been a strong support for her family. She’d thought she’d done everything right . . . but had God even noticed? Standing at her brother’s funeral she didn’t think so. Surely God could have stopped this tragedy. Didn’t Jesus care?
The “she” I’m talking about is Martha in the Bible. She’d seen Jesus heal, yet when her family needed his touch, Jesus was a no-show. Most of us know the biblical story about how Jesus finally showed up a few days later and called Lazarus from the grave. It was a healing they hadn’t expected, and I can guess that Martha went to sleep that night with a new sense of trust. Maybe Jesus knew what He was doing. Maybe she could truly trust Him after all.
Jesus told her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in me will live, even after dying. Everyone who lives in me and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this, Martha?” John 1:25-26
Jesus has asked me the same things many times—not with an audible voice, but in my spirit.
Do you believe? Do you trust me?
Do you trust I gave your child a strong will for a reason?
Do you trust this cross-country move is best for your family?
Do you trust I can do the work through you when you can’t imagine doing it yourself?
Do you trust this personal struggle of yours will be for your benefit—to cause you to turn to me, to need me, to surrender to me?
Do you trust?
In our lives, trust comes when we can’t see how God is going to bring any good out of the mess we’re in . . . and He does. Trust comes when our heart is breaking and Jesus shows up.
“Yes, Lord,” she told him. “I have always believed you are the Messiah, the Song of God, the one who has come into the world from God.” John 11:27
Martha believed in her mind. But after she embraced her warm, fleshly, laughing brother, trust moved to her heart.
In my life there was a moment when I was seventeen and pregnant, when Jesus showed up in my depressed state and gave me a glimmer of hope. Deep inside I knew that He would be there for me.
Many, many times over the years He’s shown up again in dark moments. As I watch Him transform rejection, pain, hopelessness, and worry into avenues to extend His love and grace to me and to others, my trust grows.
Learning to trust reminds me of the broken, hurting children we’ve invited into our home over the years. John and I are a constant presence guiding them, loving them, embracing them, discipling them, and sharing our lives with them – but trust didn’t happen in one day, one week, or even six months.
Trust has grown when our children discover layers of love, grace, and help in everyday challenges. When they mess up, feel stuck, or find themselves overwhelmed, they’ve discovered we’re still there. And we’ll continue to show them how to do life in a loving, healthy way.
The only way to learn to trust God is to face each dark situation knowing that Jesus WILL show up. It may not be when we expect, or how we expect, but we can expect Him.
And when Jesus shows up, He’s going to behave in a way that’s different that we believe He will. He’s not going to give us what we think we need, but what we really need. Mostly, He’s going to give us Himself.
“If you’ll hold on to me for dear life,” says God, “I’ll get you out of any trouble. I’ll give you the best of care if you’ll only get to know and trust me. Call me and I’ll answer, be at your side in bad times; I’ll rescue you, then throw you a party. I’ll give you a long life, give you a long drink of salvation.” Psalm 91:14-16 (The Message)
How have you learned to trust God in your life?
Want to learn more about soul care and having a Happy Heart? Heart Happy: Staying Centered in God’s Love through Chaotic Circumstances will inspire you to stay tethered to the Lover of your soul. By taking time to make your heart happy in the Lord, you’ll grow closer to the Heavenly Father, fostering true transformation from the inside out. Peace and joy can be yours—no matter what life dishes up.
Building up Your Faith When Your World is Falling Apart — Tricia chats with author Michele Cushatt about making sure your faith is strong when times are hard.