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What Is Your Trust In?


It is always tempting for those of us who believe in God to trust people and things we can see instead of the One whom we cannot see, at least not physically. In Isaiah's day, the people of Judah did just that, when threatened by enemy armies. God's message to them was,

Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help,

who rely on horses,
who trust in the multitude of their chariots

and in the great strength of their horsemen,
but do not look to the Holy One of Israel,

or seek help from the Lord. (Isaiah 31:1)

In our situation, we may be tempted to put all our trust in science, medical experts, the recommendations we are receiving for handling the virus, etc. Personally, I don't believe it is wrong to listen to that advice, and in fact I think there is wisdom in doing so. After all, Judah did have an army and God sometimes worked through it. The book of Joshua has many examples of God telling Joshua what to do with the army and of the army engaging the opposition.

The "Woe" in the Isaiah passage appears to be based on two mistakes Judah was making. One is they were entangling themselves in an alliance with a sinful nation who would lead them astray. The other is they were looking to that nation's army instead of looking to God and seeking help from him. They were leaving God out. I encourage us to be wise and take precautions according to the best guidance the authorities are giving us, but I strongly urge us to put our confidence in God most of all.

One great way of trusting God is to pray meaningfully to him. You probably have time to do that right now, so why not make the most of the opportunity? I pray in a variety of ways. Today I used the JESUS acronym, developed to give balance to the actual prayer and instructions about prayer in the New Testament. Here it is, in case you haven't heard it:

Joy, thanksgiving and praise. For me today that meant praising God that he is sovereign. Be still and know that he is God and then praise him for is sovereignty over the whole world, even right now.

Evangelism and missions. For me today it was prayer that this trouble we are in would make people aware of their need for God and turn to him, and that we would be alert for opportunities to discuss it with them.

Spiritual requests. Today I prayed that God would convict me of sin in me that I do not see. More on this Sunday at 10:00 on the NorthWest Church of Christ Facebook page.

Uber requests. Today I asked God to stop the virus.

Supplication. My prayer today was that God would meet our needs and protect us, especially those most vulnerable. I prayed this for the whole world.

There are many great ways to pray, but using the JESUS acronym keeps me focused and helps me keep balance and perspective.

One reason hardships come into our lives is so that we will not trust in ourselves but in God (2 Corinthians 1:8-11 is powerful on this). Let's make the most of every opportunity by casting ourselves on God in faith through prayer.

--Marvin Bryant