Some of you who have not read my earlier blogs my not know my history. As an abused child, I did not know how to love myself and certainly did not know how to love others. I was so self-centered. I was too concerned with how to protect myself from this big bad world. I thought the good I saw around me was something I did not deserve. Being told as a child, I was a bad person, I believed it.
As an adult, one of my most significant issues was trust. I either trusted too much or did not trust at all. The funny thing was, most of those I trusted, I should not have trusted, and the ones I did not trust were the ones I should have trusted—what a quandary.
When I was forty-five, I started my research into spirituality. What is it? How does it apply to me, what is my relationship to God? I spent hours looking into many faiths, trying to find one based on logic and reason, one that made sense to me. When I found it, I did an in-depth study, and still am doing a daily study. I had to know how it works in my life. As I started to understand some of the concepts, my life began to change for the better. Then came my big revelation; there is a God!
Well, here I am having trust issues with God. It is not all the time, but on occasions, I did not trust Him. I did not realize that it was my lack of trust that prevented me from achieving my desired results. I thought I trusted God. I examined my thinking and discovered thoughts that made me realize I was fearful.
It was fear that the issue I was facing was more powerful than God. How can I declare that God is all-powerful and then not trust Him? It is easy for me to trust something I see, but not so easy to trust something that seems so abstract as God. Through my study, I was discovering a God that was not abstract but demonstrable.
Okay, now let me see what was causing this fear. The media tells me every day that I cannot trust God. It is subtle but powerful. All the ads that say you need to do this or that to get a specific result, are saying you cannot trust God; you need to do it this way. So, according to the media, I need to take things into my own hands to resolve issues. God does not have the power.
“It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man.” (Psalms 118:8)
Jesus said to Saul in Acts 9:5, “it is hard for you to kick against the pricks.” I never understood that before, so I looked it up in reference books and the dictionary. Pricks mean to hurt oneself by persisting in useless resistance or protest. Also, it is a sudden feeling of distress, anxiety, or some other unpleasant emotion.
Some of you may know the story. Saul was not such a nice guy; he went around persecution the Christians. One day on his way to Damascus, to do just that, Jesus confronted him, Saul was fearful and certainly had some unpleasant emotions, thus the statement about kicking against the pricks. He was telling him it was useless to fight against him. He would only hurt himself. The vision of Christ was so bright it blinded him. For three days, he was led around, not knowing if he would ever see again. Jesus said to Ananias, who was appointed to heal Saul’s blindness, “he is a chosen vessel unto me,” Jesus knew he was the one to spread the Christ message. Ananias explained to Saul what his mission was, and Saul saw the light, turned himself around, and his name was changed to Paul, and there are eleven Epistles of Paul in the New Testament.
Isn’t it wonderful that no matter how far down the wrong road we go, there is the possibility of redemption.
Jesus made it clear to me that when I took in the media and became fearful, I was kicking against the pricks. “That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.” (I Corinthians 2:5) I would only hurt myself by not trusting God, who had already proved Himself to me many times. Intellectually I knew I should trust God, but the media persisted, and when I looked at my circumstances, the evidence looked real.
Beware what you take in from the media, it tells us that we are not pretty enough, smart enough, healthy enough, etc. It plays on our fear. They pay a lot of money to sell their products and are very cleave at doing it.
I had to go back to the beginning of my studies and remind myself, as stated in Genesis I, I am the image and likeness of God. I am spiritual, not a flawed material being. Humans tend to want to make God manlike; instead, if we are His image, we should be making man Godlike. As His image, I am flawless and perfect.
When Moses was standing in front of the burning bush, he asked God, “Behold, when I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What is his name? what shall I say unto them? And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus, shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.” Gen. 3:13-14.
I had to think about that. If I say I am a bad person, it is the same as saying God is a bad person. If I say I am anxious or afraid, it is like saying God is anxious or afraid, and I know that is not possible. I was learning to be careful when I use those two words. If I use the words I AM, what always follows should be something that can also apply to God.
I was starting to see that I need to stop thinking about my circumstances and focus my thoughts on God and His good creation. The more Godlike thoughts I put into my thinking, the less room there was for fearful thoughts, and the more I trusted God. “Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid:” Isaiah 12:2. He had been there for me before, and He would certainly be there for me now. It was the ‘still small voice’ that put the word ‘pricks” in my head so that I would check it out; God led me to the resolution of my problem.
“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.” (Proverbs 3:5)
“…whoso putteth his trust in the Lord shall be safe.” Proverbs 29:25