Do you have to believe in order to trust?

Published August 16, 2010 by joypatton

Yesterday my husband and I had one of those discussions/arguments that had been brewing for a few days.  In the course of the discussion, an interesting question came up.  Do I have to 100% believe what you are telling me is true in order to choose to trust you?  Do I have to have all the proof in order to trust you?  We each have our own examples of where betrayal has occurred, and we are learning how to trust again.

For him, it is in the area of money.  Last week he was very frustrated to learn that we had gone through all of the grocery cash for the two weeks.  He simply couldn’t understand where it all went.  He was convinced that I had been borrowing from the grocery cash to fund other categories, like my clothing and my hair.  I told him that I had only borrowed money for childcare and had already paid it back.  At least that’s what I think I did.  However I didn’t have any of the receipts to prove to him where the cash went.  At the end of the discussion, he declared that he wanted to have more of a hand in the grocery shopping.  Fine!  So last Friday when the paycheck came, I asked if he wanted to go to the store on Saturday or if I should go.  He “let” me go.  He chose to trust me to do the grocery shopping even though he didn’t completely believe me about last month’s money.

For me, earlier in the week, I found a very strange text on his phone before he woke up.  It was from a number that wasn’t in his phone.  Of course, my head started spinning that there was some woman out there giving my husband a midnight booty call.  It’s a bunny trail that leads me to a bad place.  So I decided to end the trail and call the number, which didn’t receive incoming calls.  When he woke up, I told him about the text and started asking questions.  He didn’t have any answers as to how someone would have gotten his number or why someone would text that message to him.  He too called the number and got the same response.  So while I didn’t completely believe what he was telling me was true, I chose to trust him and not let the worry consume my day.

What I love about my heavenly Father is that I know what He is tells me in His Word is 100% true.  I don’t have to guess and wonder if He is telling me the truth when I read it in black and white on the page.  So why is trusting Him so difficult?  Sometimes if I get really honest with myself, I have chosen not to believe what He has said.  I have let those little voices creep in that tell me that He doesn’t love me that much.  Surely He doesn’t have time to worry about and take care of little old me.  He isn’t willing to act in my situation, so I have to take matters into my own hands.

But what would happen if instead of dismissing my doubts, I decided to trust Him anyway?  Instead of making Him prove to me that He really does love me, I choose to trust.  Instead of running ahead of him and making it happen, I choose to trust that he will act on my behalf.  Instead of worry, prayer and trust.  Instead of insecurity and insignificance, to trust that as His Princess, I am secure and significant.  Even though the fact that He has adopted me as His own is a complete mystery that I cannot fully understand, I choose to trust that he has and accept my Princess status in His Kingdom.

When we look at the Scripture, that’s what we see men and women of faith trusting even though they may not have all the details.  Noah built an ark and got on it without asking a single question.  He sat on a boat far away from the sea for seven days before it started to rain.  I think it must have been the longest seven days of his life; I wonder if his wife was a quiet as he was.  Abram was told to get out of his father’s country and in the next verse, he departed.  He didn’t force God to give him a map; he just took the first step.  And when the angel told Mary should would get pregnant, she didn’t demand a biology lesson on exactly how a virgin becomes pregnant with God’s son.  She simply said, “Let it be.”

I don’t want to suggest that we blindly and naively believe.  I think that rather than dismissing our doubts and questions, the Father invites us to bring the doubts and questions to him.  I think what he wants from us is trust, also known as faith.  However I have found that trust also involves risk.  My husband takes a risk when he chooses to trust me to do the grocery shopping.  We might run out of money again.  I take a risk when I choose to trust that my husband is being faithful to me, and I choose to enter into intimacy with him.  Maybe I could find myself in the same place I was a few years ago, betrayed and ripped apart and broken and scared.  But I take the risk and choose to trust.

I choose to trust that God is at work on my behalf, that he has not forgotten me, that his love for me is everlasting and unfathomable.  The Orphan can’t believe that what God said is true because she has been hurt one too many times.  She can’t risk being hurt again.  The Ice Queen tries to make God prove himself before she will trust him.  She has to be 100% certain that God will keep up His end of the bargain before she can give Him control.  But God doesn’t like to play games.  He simply asks me to believe what He said is true and to trust him.  I’ve found that when I do, I find rest, peace, contentment and freedom.  So do you have to have all the proof before you will trust?  What proof do you need?  Would you choose to trust Him anyway?

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