Psalm 9:10, “And those who know Your name put their trust in You, for You, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek You.”
God’s word constantly reminds us that trusting God is the only safe bet. See Proverbs 3:5, Psalm 37:5, and Isaiah 26:3-4.
What does God’s word say about putting our trust in men or man-made solutions? See Jeremiah 17:5, Psalm 118:8, and Proverbs 28:26.
It’s tempting to place our trust in things or people, rather than God. In the end, this misplaced trust will drive unintended results. People will disappoint us. Our wisdom will fail us. Other powerful people at times will betray our trust.
But when our foundation of trust is the Lord, when we trust His word–it is only then that we can cultivate a Spirit-discerned culture of trust in our personal and professional spheres of influence.
Ignatius of Loyala, founder of the Jesuits, wrote the following prayer which is called the “suscipe” (Latin for “receive”).
Take, Lord, and receive all my liberty, my memory, my understanding, and my entire will, all I have and call my own. You have given all to me. To You, Lord, I return it. Everything is Yours; do with it what You will. Give me only Your love and Your grace. That is enough for me.
We are born questioners. The child’s great word is “why?” That is the curiosity and doubt in the nature of humanity. It is inevitable. It is not to be crushed. Doubt is the prelude to knowledge.
The instrument with which we attempt to investigate truth is impaired. Prejudice, heredity, sin have spoiled its sight. Even the strongest minds are inadequate to the task of knowing all truths.
All religious truths are doubtable. Even that fundamental truth–the existence of God–cannot be proven by reason alone. God is experienced, not just conjured up through reason.
So what? This should teach us intellectual humility. It teaches us sympathy and toleration with all who venture upon the ocean of truth. Let us not think evil of those who do not see like us. Let us take them by the hand and spend time leading them to the true light.
Jesus revealed His top priorities as He taught His disciples how to pray. His first priority was (and is) exalting the Father. His second priority was seeing the world transformed as God’s Kingdom is established on earth. Jesus was permeated with an awareness of God’s greatness and God’s design for the world. His perspective shaped His prayers, priorities, attitude and life.
What shapes my/your life?
Father God, Creator, and Sustainer of the universe, enlarge my heart to worship You, expand my perspective of who You are and what You are doing in the world. Let Your Kingdom, Your will, Your purposes come to be. Let these things shape, my priorities, my prayer life. Make me life Jesus, in whose name I pray.
“Using foresight” and “fearing the future” are two vastly different things. One is not the extreme of the other, but the opposite. The more foresight we use, the less fear (foreboding) we have. The more we are tortured by anxious thoughts about a POSSIBLE future, the less clear vision we have of a LIKELY future … and the less power to influence it.
So when Jesus teaches in Matthew 6:24-25 not to be anxious, He does not mean to prevent the exercise of wise foresight but the constant preoccupation and distraction of the heart looking forward and fearing.
In Jesus’ public ministry He was known for a lot of things: performing miracles, teaching crowds, and rising to the challenge of the religious leaders. He was also known for caring for people that those same leaders considered beneath them: tax collectors, sinners, women, and those who were poor, hurting, and outcast. God’s love and purpose defined the scope of His life and ministry.
What are you known for?
Matthew 9:10-11, “While Jesus was having dinner at Matthew’s house, many tax collectors and sinners came and ate with him and his disciples. 11 When the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, ‘Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?'”
Jesus, I want my relationship with You to define my life and my leadership. Search my heart. Root out worldly longings and thinking. I want increasingly to be known as someone who loves lives and leads like You. In Your name, Amen.