I am thoroughly enjoying my Bible reading plan so far this year. The only thing is…I struggle moving on to the next chapter every time my imagination piques or heart stirs. Believe me, that is often. I’m a deep thinking, rabbit chasing, rose sniffing, read-between-the-lines kind of girl. It takes an enormous amount of discipline to turn the page when I want to linger. There is a difference in reading vs. studying the Bible—both methods are good. Study is my favorite, but this year I am reading too. Hopefully, like many of you, I will read through the Bible this year.
Right now I am in the middle of Exodus. If I have seen one theme consistently running through what I’ve read so far, it would be “God Always Has A Plan.” Wait. Maybe it should be: “God Always Has An End Result!” Wait! Maybe it is, “Relationships are nurtured in the strategies!” I have seen these themes from page one. Granted, that’s not new information, but in today’s turbulent times, the fact God has a plan and already knows the end result is really a big deal.
I’ve seen God communicate His plan and end results in my reading so far with Adam, Noah, Abram, Isaac, Joseph, and Moses—just to name a few. That tells me a lot about how God works. He isn’t vague about what He’s going to do, and He’s also direct with His expectations. It’s the methods that seem vague.
My favorite example so far is found in Exodus 13:17-18. “When Pharaoh finally let the people go, God did not lead them along the main road that runs through Philistine territory, even though that was the shortest route to the Promised Land. God said, ‘If the people are faced with a battle, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.’ So God led them in a roundabout way through the wilderness toward the Red Sea. Thus the Israelites left Egypt like an army ready for battle.”
I wonder how many times God has led me in a roundabout way when He was moving me from point A to point B? It is so easy to forget that God is always working with all of the information and is strategizing with my best interest at heart. The Israelites weren’t happy about the intentional field trip, but God was teaching them to trust Him. Could it be He knew they would have to trust Him before they could ever love Him? Trust is the foundation of love and love is the essence of worship. Remember, God delivered them out of Egypt so they could worship Him. It was essential for the Israelites to trust God. Trust is everything.
I’m no counselor, but I know enough about relationships to say, no relationship can survive without trust. Trust is also a two-way street. To form a bond of trust, both parties need to be trustworthy. That takes honesty, vulnerability and the ability to give and receive. I was able to witness such an act of trust this morning. I took my grandgirlie out to breakfast this morning to the Waffle House. This was her first experience at the tender age of five. I notice an elderly black gentleman at the bar area sipping coffee. When the crowd thinned out, he got up and went to the end of the counter. He asked the young, white waitress if she would put eyedrops in his eye. She responded, “Sure, let me wash my hands first.” After she washed and dried her hands, he handed her his bottle. He then leaned, tilting his head all the way back looking up at the ceiling. This waitress-turned-temporary- nurse angel proceeded to carefully squeeze the medicine into his eyes. He sat up, thanked her and went back to his coffee. Needless to say her kindness and his trust was beautiful on many levels. Trust is everything.
This act of trust played out before my eyes warmed my heart for many reasons, but also demonstrated a beautiful trusting relationship. This is what God desires from us! The fact is, God could not be more trustworthy. He cannot lie. He’s never broken a promise to anyone at anytime. He’s also available 24/7 and knows everything about us, even our thoughts before we think them! God is trustworthy, but can He trust us? Trust is everything.
It really is sweet to trust in Jesus, and I sure am thankful He is patient when we pray, O for grace to trust Him more. He will give us grace to trust Him more. Trust is everything—I believe it’s because trust is the foundation of love, and that’s what He’s after.
Remember, “You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord God is an everlasting rock” (Isaiah 26:3-4).