Judges 9 speaks of Abimelech a treacherous brother to the house of Jerubbaal who convinced the people of Shechem to crown him king. There is a parable written within this chapter explaining the false trust placed between Abimelech and the people of Shechem, “…Then said all the trees unto the bramble, Come thou, and reign over us. And the bramble said unto the trees, If in truth ye anoint me king over you, then come and put your trust in my shadow: and if not, let fire come out of the bramble, and devour the cedars of Lebanon.”(Judges 9:14-15)
This story ends badly. Trusting in something outside of God is dangerous and always leads to hurt and pain. Proverbs 3:5 tells us to, “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.”
So, what will a different story tell us, a story of trust within God, will it end the same?
David, King of Israel. He had been at war with the Philistines and had battled four descendants from the giants in Gath which fell at the hands of David and his servants. 2 Samuel 22:3 records David’s song of deliverance on the day when the LORD delivered him for all his enemies and from the hand of Saul; he said, “The LORD is my rock; in him will I trust: he is my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my high tower, and my refuge, my savior; thou savest me from violence.”
Trust put into man and the physical aspects of our lives is like playing a game of chance, you have a fifty/fifty chance of a good or bad ending. Putting our trust in God is like having a cheat card in the game of life. Despite our physical situation we know our ultimate ending will be of prosperity and wholeness within the care of a living God!
Another story of unwavering trust is the story of Ruth. She had multiple opportunities to pull away and fall into the comfortable trust of man and fortune, but she chose to push forward through adversity with trust in her mother-in-laws God. Her reward was salvation, not just spiritually speaking but physically speaking. Her husbandman redeemer, Boaz came through for her, and her trust in God paved the way. “The LORD recompense thy work, and full reward be given thee of the LORD GOD of Israel, under whose wings thou art come to trust.” (Ruth 2:12)
What beautiful stories of trust in God and how God came through for them. We saw what happened later in David’s story when he trusted himself to fix a sin instead of God, his whole house fell. And, Ruth’s sister-in-law who went back to her own people, she was never spoken of again, who knows what became of her because she chose to trust in the physical world she knew than in the God of her mother-in-law as Ruth did. Trust in ourselves or the physical aspects of this world only bring destruction to our already difficult situation. While trusting in God brings life and understanding to our difficult situations. The ending may be the same either way. We may be injured, we may lose the only job feeding our family, we may experience the death of a loved one. Physical trust leaves us broken and lonely because it does nothing to fill the void of loss and hurt. Trust in a living God gives us promise of healing and wholeness beyond the physical. It shows us that faith extends past our circumstances and into love.
I’m not saying that you shouldn’t trust anyone in your life; what I’m saying is that you should first trust GOD, the giver of life. Taking your focus off God and putting it into the confinement of this world, expecting some one of physical, sinful nature to fill that form of trust will only bring hurt to your heart and soul. Our need of trust can truly only be filled by the living GOD of Israel. Instead of trusting that person, maybe you should simply love them instead. You don’t have to trust someone to love them, but loving them has the potential to bring them into God’s trust, and opens the door for your healing as well as theirs’. No one’s perfect, and someone at some point will fail you. We live in a broken and fallen world of selfishness and greed. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist (excuse the pun) to understand that a person born to sin will sin. So take the pressure of trust off people’s shoulders, they can’t bare the weight, and put it on God because he can. We are redeemed by the belief in Jesus as the Son of GOD and faith in the living GOD of Israel, and one day we will be brought up to them in heaven and made whole and will dwell with them in eternity perfect and sinless. But, until that day comes, we are bound to be hurt by the sinful nature of human beings. Love does not require perfection, in fact it doesn’t require anything at all. Love was designed to be given freely. Trust requires something, Love requires nothing. Put your trust and love in a God that has everything to give and nothing to lose, and return his love to the people who need everything and have nothing to give in return.
“But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee. For thou, LORD, wilt bless the righteous; with favor wilt thou compass him as with a shield.” Psalms 5:11-12