My daughter, Ginny, and I started watching PBS’s Downtown Abby over the holidays. In one episode, pretty Mary Crawly and her parents hope a visiting duke will choose Mary to be his bride. But he loses interest the moment he learns that her family’s fortune will go to a distant male cousin.
From Mary’s perspective, it looks like her lack of fortune has ruined her chance for an advantageous marriage. But we viewers know things hidden from Mary. This “nobleman” is completely ignoble. Mary’s lack of fortune protected her, not thwarted her future.
This reminded me of how faith is tied to the invisible. “Now faith is…the conviction [evidence] of things not seen,” (Hebrews 11:1, NASB).
In stories we often have the advantage of seeing things hidden from the main character. The hidden realities change the meaning of what we see. The Apostle Paul wrote, “We look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal,” (2 Cor. 4:18, NASB).
I wonder how many things I call liabilities are really protections from God? Or perhaps they are opportunities for me to grow and to see God shine.
In Deuteronomy chapter one, Moses recalls God’s care of Israel and her rebellion against Him. God had fought for Israel and carried her through the wilderness, “just as a man carries his son,” and they still would not trust Him.
Trust here means to be faithful. To see giant fighting men and fortified cites blocking your goal would make your heart quiver, but they could have been faithful and obeyed God in spite of their feelings.
I prayed to learn how to trust God more this year. My first week in 2013 I’ve learned these things about trust:
- I trust God when I am faithful to obey His commands. I can trust whether or not I feel confident about a desired outcome or my understanding of a situation.
- I trust God because He has been faithful and true to me. He fought for me on the cross. He has carried me through my own wildernesses. He is trustworthy.
- I can trust that God is working in realms I cannot see. Invisible does not mean nonexistent.
What do you wish you could change with a magic wand? How could God be invisibly working for your good because of this very thing?
I invite you to join me in this journey to learn to trust God more. Please share what you are learning, too. Also, what do you think about Jason Gray’s idea of faith in his song ?
Deborah W. Wilson
Ladies, I’ll be leading Give Yourself a Break this semester in Zebulon. Click here for more information.
Ann Musico says
Deborah – those three things you shared are so simple yet so deep. I have looked back in hindsight many times and seen just how God’s seeming “no” or inaction was really His amazing love and protection. Just as we, as parents, can foresee things our children cannot, and we desire them to trust us that’s how I see what only God sees. It’s definitely a process and I’m a work in progress, but I believe as I intentionally trust Him my faith will grow. It reminded me of the scripture in 2 Kings 6:17 where Elisha prays that God would open his servant’s eyes to see the invisible host of angels fighting for them. And I love the song – I see a definite connection between truly trusting and falling in love.
Ann, thanks for reminding me of 2 Kings. That story gives me goose bumps and reminds me of Paul’s prayer for us in Ephesians 1:18. Your analogy of a parent foreseeing things children can’t is so true. If that is true for human parents, how much more is it true of our all-knowing heavenly Father. I like the song too because God definitely woes us and loves us. He wants a love relationship, and isn’t that what we are made for? Love hearing from you.