Trust can often be hard won and easily lost. In the world of work we must build education, experience and skill in order to win the trust of would-be employers. We trust certain companies and manufacturers more than others based on past performance and experiences with them. In relationships we watch people's behaviour and character and trust grows or shrinks within us based on what we see. Building trust is hard work.
In today's world it is the same with trusting God. People have had bad experiences with religion and religious people. People have greater access to a wide range of information. We all, also, have histories of disappointments in life. All of these translate to a trust in God being hard won in our lives. So how do we build a life that rests on the foundation of a trust in God's faithfulness to us? The Psalmist says in 119:90, "His faithfulness endures through generations." How do we instil that knowledge in our lives?
The times in which my trust has been broadsided by life are moments of tragedy or loss. The times when my faith has been most shaken has been in the midst of what appears to be an unanswered prayer or a sense of being forgotten by God. In those days of wondering where it all went wrong, I find myself doubting God's actions in the world. I bargain; "is this why I follow you?" I rage; "You've really let me down this time!" and I wallow; "Why would I expect anything more from You?" There have been moments, sometimes rushing on into weeks, when I have held doubt close to my chest and found some comfort in redefining life as without God and meaningless.
Yet I have always come back from those low points. I have learned where to invest my doubt. I was raised to put my faith in things, but nobody told me where to put my doubt. I am learning to doubt what I feel because it changes like the wind. I have learned to doubt my plans as they often come up short. I have learned to doubt my understanding because I can only see what is my line of vision.
I have also learned where to place my questions. It is not just okay but it is healthy to ask questions of what God may be doing in our lives. If we suppress questions of His actions we are just avoiding the issue. I question His actions and I often rage in disappointment but I never question His character.
As I look back on my life, and I am sure it is the same for you, I can see that He is good. I can see that He has been faithful and merciful. My life is littered with His kindness, often in the midst of moments where I doubted His existence at all. If I have learned one thing to this date; it is that He is good and He loves us.
Whatever you are facing this week remember His goodness. When you are struggling to trust His actions, work hard to trust His character. He is good and His faithfulness to you will endure even today.