A little while back, I watched the movie ‘Return to Neverland’ with my daughters. My favorite part of the movie is when Tink ‘gets her light back’ through the faith of a child, Jane (Wendy’s daughter). A song plays in the background that says ‘Faith, Trust, and Pixie Dust’.
Later that week, I asked the girls what they thought the word ‘trust’ meant. (Side note: I’ll tell you, God can really speak to you through your children. Take the time to listen…) Zoe said that trust was ‘having faith in God’. Elsie said it was ‘obeying God’. The interesting thing to me is that I didn’t even mention God when I asked them what trust meant. But they automatically associated God with the word trust, which to me speaks volumes. With Zoe’s answer of trust meaning faith, it made me think again of that Peter Pan song, ‘Faith, Trust, and Pixie Dust’.
If faith and trust seem to be the same thing to my 9 year old, I thought I might should look it up.
I looked up the word ‘faith’ in the Merriam Webster dictionary.
Faith – belief or trust in and loyalty to God
So maybe she’s right!
Trust – (noun) an assured reliance on the character, ability, strength, or trust of someone or thing
(verb) to place confidence in or to hope or expect confidently
We are told, actually commanded, to trust in the Lord. During the good times and bad, when we don’t necessarily agree with His plan, when we can’t see the entire picture, and even when the world ‘moves like mad’ all around us. Proverbs 3:5 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding”. And Philippians 4:6-7 says, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” We can do those things when we trust in Him. And through that, He gives us peace. A peace that is indescribable – it transcends our understanding.
Like when people lose children, lose jobs, get very sick… .but still seem to have some divine peace about them. That is the direct result of trusting in our God.
I have 3 stories that remind me of this trust that yields transcending peace:
1 – When I would wash Zoe’s hair when she was younger. It reminded me of my mom washing my hair when I was a child. We Clements girls had a ton of hair! So we had to have our mom help us. But we didn’t have one of those fancy showerhead sprayers that you could take down and use to rinse our hair. I’m not even sure if those were invented then! Mom used the water right out of the faucet to rinse our hair. She would lean me back with one hand sort of on my neck and the top of my back and hold me under the faucet as she used the other hand to rinse the shampoo out. I was so scared at first… of her getting water in my face, soap in my eyes, but mainly, of hitting my head on that hard, metal faucet.
But, those things never happened. Also, I had no choice in the matter.
– I had to take a bath.
– I couldn’t do it by myself. I wasn’t physically capable.
– I had to obey my mom. She said lean back, and I leaned back! She could be pretty intense at times!
But she washed my hair every time – for years – and never once hit my head, or get soap in my eyes.
This type of trust is a FORCED TRUST, MANDATORY TRUST.
The same trust you use to sit in your chair, drive your car, fly in an airplane, ride a carnival ride… you can do nothing else about it. You trust because you have to.
2 – Growing up, we went to a very large A/G church in Birmingham, AL. It was originally called Huffman Assembly of God and then changed the name to Cathedral of the Cross. One Sunday morning when church was over, my dad was walking to the car holding my little sister’s hand. It was extremely bright on a very light concrete parking lot. They had to cross a busy street to get to our car. He asked if she was okay and if the sun was too bright for her as he placed his sunglasses over his eyes. She said she was fine. He asked again thinking he would place his sunglasses on her since it was so bright. Again, Bekah said she was okay. As they began to cross the street, he looks down and noticed that her eyes were closed. She just held on to her father’s hand and walked where he led her with complete trust.
This type of trust is BLIND TRUST, CHILD-LIKE TRUST.
This is the same trust we use with Santa Clause, our debit cards, and even Salvation. We may not see those things, but somehow we trust – believe – that they are there. There will be gifts on Christmas morning, there will be money going out of my account and into either Walmart’s or Target’s :), and MOST importantly, there is a Savior that comes and lives in our hearts – even though we have never physically seen His face, we know He’s there.
3 – It was Easter 2003. This was the last Easter that Scott and I had at New Covenant Fellowship, the non-denominational church we met at, before God called him in to the Methodist church. Our church was on a 4-lane highway that happened to have 3 large trailer parks within a mile radius of the campus. There was a large number of Hispanic families that lived in these parks. When the church decided to have a community wide egg hunt, we decided that we would send out our church vans and bus those kids in from those parks. One little girl there taught me a lesson I will never forget.
I drove one of the vans, and had several of our students and other adult volunteers with me. We parked in a central location of the homes. We went door to door trying to explain what we were doing, which was hard to do with the language barrier. It seemed to be that at least one person in each house could speak English. Most families did send their kids, and at least one adult would come along. But one family sent us 3 children, but with no adult members from their household. The youngest was a 4 year old girl named America. Her dad was so proud to tell me that her name was America 🙂
Once we got to the church, the children got divided up by ages for the different hunts. The older brother and sister went to their groups, which left little America all by herself. Someone came to and told me she was crying, so I went and found her and tried to console her. I tried to play games with her, give her candy, hide eggs, but nothing worked. And with the language barrier, she couldn’t understand me. I understood her though… tears mean the same thing in any language.
Finally, I just picked her up and carried her to the fellowship hall where we had some food. I stopped talking, and just held her in my lap with her head on my chest. I just rocked her back and forth and she soon stopped crying. Then I realized that her breathing became very steady and deep. She had fallen asleep, right in my arms. The thing is, it’s not like we were now in a dark, quiet place, where it would be easy to fall asleep. We were in a fellowship hall, full of rowdy kids, playing and laughing, high on Easter candy! But she made the choice to trust me in the midst of her chaos, and quickly found peace.
This is EYE OF THE STORM TRUST, RESTFUL TRUST.
This trust is the trust when ‘the world moves like mad’ – almost like the last resort type of trust, which actually should be our first resort! It should be the first thing we do in situations where nothing makes sense anymore.
God taught me such an eternal lesson that day. Although I might find myself in a situation similar to America’s, where nothing is familiar (searching for her family), and where nothing makes sense (not being able to understand me due to the language barrier), if I will just trust Him, He will pick me up and hold me in His arms with my head against His chest, where the sound of His heartbeat will bring peace to the chaotic world I might be in at the time.
Today, I find myself in need of a good dose of trust. Maybe you do too…
1 – Forced trust – family things, health things like learning or physical disabilities, church things. The stuff you have no control over, like my mom hitting my head on the faucet.
2 – Blind trust – choosing college, going back to college, spouse, job, your identity, your parenting style. The stuff you do have control over.
3 – ‘Crazy world around us’ trust – When your world moves like mad: death, divorce, sudden health issues, crime, some things already listed above. Some of which you can and can’t control. But this trust you can rest in. Like sweet America falling asleep in my arms.
In the end, all these ‘types’ of trust are really all the same. And situations and circumstances where you have/need to trust God are a lot of times a combination of the 3.
It really all comes back to one word – SOVEREIGN.
So back to the dictionary:
Sovereign – having undisputed right to make decisions and act accordingly.
Basically, it’s control. And I know the main man in charge, the one who is in control – The sovereign King of this world and King of my heart! We need to REST in His sovereignty. REST in the fact that He is in control. Just like America found REST in my arms.
Things are always going to change in our lives. New friends, jobs, bosses, pastors, schools, sicknesses, deaths, divorces, government officials, church appointments… but REST in the fact that God has it all under control.
Psalm 91:1-2 says
1 Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will REST in the shadow of the Almighty.
2 I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”
So rest easy, friends. Trust in the God who can see the entire picture. Rest in the arms that are never too small, too weak, too tired, or too busy to hold you.