‘Those who trust in the Lord’ (Ps.125:1)

Living the Christian life means that we are to trust God at all times. However trusting in the Lord does not come naturally to us but trusting, said Martin Luther ‘is the plain way to God’. Trusting God is the walk of faith, the way of faith and the work of faith (James 2:26). God says to us ‘Trust me’.

We need to trust God by displaying four characteristics

Be Dependent

Self-sufficient people think that they need to trust in no one but themselves because they look to their own resources. Some love money. Others depend on intellect. Yet others rely on family. However, those who trust in Christ depend on Him for protection (v.2); strength (v.3; cf., 2 Cor. 3:5); encouragement (v.4; cf., 2 Cor. 4:16-18) and inner peace (v.5b).

In the Christian life, we are dependent on Christ and His Spirit for help in our ‘spiritual battle’ (Eph. 6:10-20). Christians are sure Christ will supply all their needs (Phil. 4:19) and keep them strong in the faith (1 Peter 1:5). The Christian life is one of total dependence.

Prayer is of vital importance (v.4). Do you agree that prayer is a precious and an essential activity? I hope so. However it must also be normal. Thus we should pray daily and pray ‘without ceasing’ (Psalm 62:8; Eph. 6:18). We cannot keep ourselves secure but the Bible makes it clear that ‘our sufficiency is of God’ (2 Tim. 1:2b).

Be Confident

Confidence in Christ Himself is essential if trusting in God is to bear fruit. Are we confident that our Saviour is able to keep us from falling (cf. Jude 24)? If so, what does that require on our part?

Remember, trusting someone entails the conviction that they can be fully depended upon, so their character and their motives are of vital importance. We must take into account the integrity of their character and their ability to give the help we require. These vital qualities are found in Jesus Christ our Saviour (1 John 4:8 & 10; Phil. 1: 6; Col. 1:2; cf., Jeremiah 29: 11-12; Psalm 138: 8).

Exercising faith will place our future in God’s hands. It has been said that, ‘God is our Trustee and He has promised to manage all our affairs and to manage them well’. Thus if we deal with God, it must be on the basis of confidence that holds fast.

We all face many problems in life and there are times when we do not know what to do or where to turn. That is another opportunity to fully trust our Saviour’s love for us and his promises to us (Prov. 3: 5 & 6; Ps. 32; 10; Matt. 6: 5-15; 2 Cor. 5: 7).

Be Patient

Trust without patience is putting ‘self’ on the throne; however, exercising patience is letting Christ sit on the throne of our hearts. If we really trust Christ we will triumph over our impatience. We always want things now, i.e. without delay. There is a need for us to be patient (Ps.123:1-2; Heb. 10:35-36).

Patience is not procrastination (delaying) but faith in operation (Heb. 10:36; 11:13-16). It is good to remember that God can answer our prayers in three ways, i.e. yes, no and wait! (1 John 3:22; 5:14; John 14: 26). Patience is the fruit of the Holy Spirit and is a friend to self-control (Gal. 5: 22)

“Rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer” (Rom.12:12)

The Christian must place full and unreserved confidence in Christ their Saviour. He must be dependent on Him for everything required to finish the race (Heb. 12:1-2)

The Christian is called to exercise the grace of patience while awaiting the call to come home to heaven. Matthew Henry said, ‘All that deal with God must deal upon trust, and he will give comfort to those only that give credit to Him’.

Be Hopeful

Hope which is important to all who would walk in faith and trust God is faith plus patience. Without it, there is the temptation to doubt and impatience is encouraged. Hope is “set before us” in the Gospel (Heb 6:18) to believe, receive and rely on. The object of hope is God Himself.

Hope is always about tomorrow (Rom. 8:24). “This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast” (Heb. 6:19). Hope is trust in the “God of Hope” for “He remains Faithful” (2 Tim. 2:13).

Photo by Sean Benesh on Unsplash

Rev Ian S McNaughton is presently serving as the Vice-Chairman of Barnabas Aid in the UK.