I stood in front of the busted-up walls, amazed by all I never knew was behind them. Wires. Pipes. Support beams. Insulation. It all stood out so very vulnerable and exposed. I ran my hand along the rough reality of renovation and thought how very similar my heart felt at the moment. The only difference was I knew my house would be put back together, better than ever.
I wasn’t so sure about my heart.
With the house, I knew a basic time frame. I also knew enough about renovations to add a few months of buffer time to the end date. Regardless, I knew there would be a beginning to this project, and there would be an ending to this project. And I knew the end result would be beautiful. So since I knew the basic time frame and how beautiful things would eventually be, the busting-up part of the renovation didn’t bother me. I was actually happy that demolition occurred.
The demolition was not a sign of irreparable problems. It was a sign of intentional progress. But I couldn’t say the same about the busted up places of my heart. Not right now. Not yet.
When I stood and looked in the mirror, my demolished heart wasn’t quite as easy to see as the walls in my house. The brokenness certainly revealed things, but they weren’t as easy to identify as pipes and wires. They were strange threads of fear, anxiety, shock, trauma and distrust.
Distrust. There it was. The biggest of all the issues beneath my surface. The ripping open and exposing of my heart had certainly revealed something I needed to see but didn’t dare want to admit.
About me. About God. And about my utter lack of trust in Him.
Now don’t get me wrong, I’m a Jesus girl through and through. I love studying His Word, doing the right and required things, following Him and fulfilling my calling. But when God starts to deviate from the plan I’m assuming my life should follow, I’m much more apt to want to tame God, not trust Him.
I want to demand the Builder hand over the tools. And though I have no clue how to truly make things better, I start patching and covering and frantically fixating on a hodgepodge repair that will be disappointing at best, detrimental at worst.
And I wonder why I’m so exhausted and anxious and heavy-burdened on the inside while singing and quoting verses about the abundant Christian life on the outside.
There’s a disconnect somewhere between the faith I want and the one I’m living.
I know you feel it too. I’ve seen it in your tear-filled eyes, and I’ve heard it in your questions around the hard things to understand about God.
So how do we rebuild our trust in God? Where do we even begin? I’ve found the best place to start is His Word.
The truth of God’s trustworthy character is evident in every page of Scripture. We see evidence of this truth in the covenant promises God made (and kept) to Abraham, Moses and David. We see it in His faithfulness to provide for the Israelites during their wilderness wanderings — going before them in a pillar of fire by night and cloud by day, resting in the midst of their presence in the tabernacle, providing them manna to eat.
And there was one thing God did that outshines every other example of His trustworthy nature. God was faithful to the promise He made to Adam and Eve by crushing the head of the serpent, as He sent His own Son to earth to die the death we should have died. Jesus reigns victorious over sin and death.
This is why the psalmist could truthfully declare in Psalm 111:7, “The works of his hands are faithful and just; all his precepts are trustworthy.”
The Hebrew word for trustworthy in this verse comes from the root word, אמן ( ́á·mân), which encapsulates loyalty, faithfulness and dependability — all characteristics that are true and evident in God. In one sentence, the psalmist declared all of God’s works faithful and filled with justice; therefore, He is trustworthy.
This is how we stop resisting God’s ways. This is where we start finding a more grounded faith, renovated hearts and a strengthened trust in God like never before. We look to His Word for the truth of His faithfulness. Because when we remember His faithfulness, we come to believe that because God is faithful, He can be trusted.
Father God, thank You for reminding me that I don’t have to have all the answers. I just need to trust. Help me fix my eyes on Your faithfulness. I’m loosening my grip and surrendering all of my life into Your loving and capable hands. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Listen to this week’s episode of Pardon the Mess with Lysa TerKeurst here!
Lysa TerKeurst is a #1 New York Times bestselling author and president of Proverbs 31 Ministries. Her latest study on 1+2 Kings, Trustworthy: Overcoming Our Greatest Struggles to Trust God, is now available! Connect with Lysa on social media @LysaTerKeurst or LysaTerKeurst.com.