Proverbs 3:5-6. 5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart,
and do not lean on your own understanding.
6 In all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make straight your paths.
Proverbs 3:5-6 is one of the best known and most loved of all the scriptures. We might call it a summation of the entire Bible – Trust God, and he will bring you home.
But as I write this many of us are struggling to trust God. Fear of the unknown grips our hearts. Today the spreading coronavirus pandemic is beyond our full understanding and control. As we see more and more people suffering we feel more and more afraid.
And beyond this global crisis, we are each facing new and ongoing personal crises that seek to steal away our faith in God. It doesn’t take much before we’ve naturally shifted into hopelessness or self-preservation as we desperately try to gain a level of understanding and control in the midst of the unknown and the uncontrollable.
But what we need to know is that we were never meant to be in control. And we were never meant to live in fear. We were made to trust in the LORD.
In the midst of all that would drive us deeper into fear, wisdom says that we can know the One who is in control of all things. And so we must fight to not let Proverbs 3:5-6 become a cliche to us. Instead, each inspired phrase must overwhelm our souls.
Trust – from the Hebrew word that means “to lay down.” Can you lay your life face down helpless in front of God and allow him to be your king?
in the LORD – the covenant name of God. Do you believe that God has made promises to you that he will never break? A promise to love you forever and bring you home to himself?
with all your heart – your entire being. Can you trust God with your mind and your gut? Is every part of your life resting in his care?
and do not lean on your own understanding – can you admit that your understanding of all things is infinitely less than God’s? And not only less, but also self-centered and self-destructive?
In all your ways acknowledge [know] him – to make a choice, big or small, is a chance to know God and his love more deeply than before.
he will make straight your paths – the goal of all trust in God, a straight path to his presence, free from the obstacles of fear and doubt removed by his perfect love.
Yes, this sounds amazing, and who wouldn’t want this kind of life? A life without the fears of this world. The fear of death. The fear of loneliness. The fear of loss. The fear of pain. The fear of sorrow. But how? How can we trust God when he allows all of these things to crash down on us? How can we trust a God who seems silent in our pain and sorrow? Who leaves us in the darkness?
We can trust in the LORD in the darkness, in the silence, and in the pain, knowing that God is actually IN the darkness, the silence, and the pain.
Jesus Christ, the LORD, experienced our same darkness, silence, and pain. At the cross, God the Father removed his light, withheld his voice, and crushed his son. And on the cross God the Son, took the silent wrath of God’s darkness upon and into himself. All so that we would never have to. All so that no matter how fearful this life becomes we never have to be afraid. We can trust the LORD with all our heart.
Because Jesus Christ experienced all this for us in his death, now by his resurrection he can be our straight path. Jesus said to his disciples “I am the way.” The path. Jesus doesn’t just show us the way. He IS the way. By our union with Christ we are on the path to God. By experiencing all that he experienced on the cross, all the darkness, the silence, the pain, and by sharing in his resurrection unto victory, every obstacle to God’s love has been forever removed.
“To live is Christ” means nothing can ever separate us from the love of God in Christ. No virus. No loss. No isolation. No affliction. Nothing in life or death. The path to God is clear. And when every obstacle is removed, there is nothing left to fear, and only trust remains.
What do you fear of today? What are you trusting in?
You in Christ
How does knowing that Jesus is your clear path to God allow you to trust God in all your ways today?
Christ in you
Where is Christ asking you to trust him today?