Welcome to my blog...

Green trees, cool water, a gentle breeze...the perfect place to sit at the feet of the Master and learn. Jesus taught so often on the shoreline, and He's still speaking today.

This is where I share the lessons He teaches me, often during the time I spend on the shores of a local lake. I don't have all the answers...and some days I don't have any. But I go here when I need to draw near to Him in a tangible way. Come with me...

Saturday, February 15, 2014

When Trust Is All You Have


The judge handed down a preliminary decision.  It was not what my attorney and I expected. It was not what anyone thought would happen.

"It's still not over" my lawyer counseled.  We'll go before the judge tomorrow and make our case.

The next day, we discovered we were not on the docket. Even after clearing up the communication error, the judge refused to see us. The preliminary decision, in all its unfairness, was final.

It was a crushing blow.

Tears flowed down my face as I tried to wrap my mind around what this all meant and what my next step would be.

"We'll file a motion to have it reviewed.  We'll send along some new information."

Weeks went by.  The court date was moved a week and I couldn't be there in person.  Then more waiting. Somehow, the review decision took more than a month and a half to reach me after it was made.

Declined.

I got angry.

I felt my attorney had failed me.  The judicial system had failed me.  And God?  Where was He in all of this?

On December 31st I wrote about my "one word" for the new year.  I had no idea what it would be.  I'd prayed about it, debated on it, but didn't know what it was until, as I looked over what I had written in the post so far, I saw one word surface over and over again.  

Trust.

I braced myself.  I've walked with God long enough to know a word like that means lessons are going to be learned.  You don't trust without being put in situations where you have to exercise it.  

So where was God?  Right here.  Waiting for my decision.

Would I trust Him?

Would I believe He was still good if things didn't work out as I expected?

In a devotional entitled "False Security", I read these words "are you depending more on God's provision than on God himself?

I had to think about that.  I wasn't sure I'd ever separated the two entities in my mind.

When I first entered this battle, I was okay.  I had this - I've trusted God before.  He's provided...

Money. And from the craziest places - for expenses like food, gas, insurance, utilities.  It's a good thing He has cattle on a thousand hills, because I know more than a few have been sold on my behalf.

A job.  One that He not only placed me in, but preserved through some very shaky times when others were not as fortunate, including a company sale this past May.

A car.  I was blessed with the donation of (yes, as in free) a 2005 Nissan Altima when my Pathfinder gave up the ghost at 262,000 miles a little more than a year ago.

Each time a need arose, I brought it to Him, confident I could trust Him to provide.

But this time, no provision is evident.  I'm in the 11th hour and I still see no definite way out.  In fact, it seems like everything I could possibly lean on is being kicked out from under me.

When I was given my word, I was also given a scripture.  Proverbs 3:5 & 6:  "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight."

Lean not on your own understanding...trust in the Lord.  Could it be any more plain?

In fact, every day this year...all 46 of them so far...God has shown me the word trust.  In scripture.  In song. In the email of a friend.  In a devotional.  In a picture posted on Facebook.  Even in the title of a book I was given for my birthday.  The word "trust" has become ubiquitous.

I'm on the look out for it now.  Excited to see how it will appear.  Knowing that seeing it is a promise from God...a personal gift, just for me.

As I write this today, the circumstances have not changed.  The judge didn't suddenly change his mind. Things haven't turned in my favor.  The way forward is not crystal clear.

What has changed is my attitude.  I have laid it all down.  I am taking days one at a time, holding on to His hand, confident that while I cannot see where any of this leads, He does.  His provision is still there, even if it looks different than I imagined.

I love Ephesians 3:20.  Today it has come in front of me 4 times.  4 times!! Talk about confirmation. Ephesians 3:20 says this..."Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us..."

I imagined an outcome that I did not receive.  But God is able to give me immeasurably more.

I was going to quote Psalm 84:11 here - "For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless." and then my eyes fell on the next verse..."O Lord Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you."

Thank you Jesus - I found my word trust for today.

photo credit





11 comments:

  1. Toni -- truly you have met Him or rather He has continued to meet you where you are despite your feelings. He is trustworthy --you are right.

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    1. Yes Joy, He does continue to meet me - that's for sure! He is trustworthy, kind, loving and gracious. Thanks for stopping by (and for your encouraging note).

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  2. Toni, I so know God is going to deepen your intimacy with Him and trust in Him this year. Something good is brewing. Because He is good, but that is the point I guess. We walk with this One True Living God, one day at a time. There is no other way, as you know but the two words- just two: and I know you know them...so I'll let you sing them. Trusting in Him with you, In His (still amazing) grace, Dawn

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    1. All kinds of songs now going through my head Dawn :) Trust and obey, for there's no other way to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey. But you side comment brings to mind...Your grace still amazes me
      Your love is still a mystery
      Each day i fall on my knees
      'cause your grace still amazes me
      Amen to all you've said here Dawn - thanks for your encouragement my friend.

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    2. Great post. Have you experienced any financial provisions or material provisions that nobody else had any way of knowing about? Like George Muehler style? :-)

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    3. Great post! Have you experienced any financial or material provisions that nobody but God would have known about? Like George Muehler, the guy famous for starting the orphanages in England.

      David

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    5. Yes, David, I definitely have. During a difficult period when my children were younger, it was not unusual to receive an anonymous gift card to the food store. It happened enough that one time, when I had to tell my son I couldn't food shop for a week because that's when I got paid, his response was "just go to the mailbox - I bet someone sent us a food card". Another time, I was $400 short on car insurance. It was a huge debacle and a much longer story than that, but bottom line was that was the last of the amount I needed. I received a card with a check for $400 in it. When I spoke to the sender and asked why I was holding it, her response was - we've been saving money for a gift above our tithe. I felt God say to give it to you...do you have a need? Just this past December, when I had unexpected costs related to the story above, someone I hadn't seen in months walked up to me and pressed $500 in my hand and said she was being obedient to the leading of the Holy Spirit. That same person said she had always wished she had lived during George Muehler's time, but now she didn't have to because she knew her own George Muehler...me. I don't feel worthy of being put in that category, but I was humbled and honored to have her say that, and glad that I can give God praise for the things He's done perhaps helping to grow and encourage the faith of others.

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    6. Thanks so much for the awesome reply! That made my day. It's so easy to forget when you get caught up in the negative emotions that God is still doing cool stuff.

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  3. Beautiful, Toni. I was so blessed by reading this. Thank you for directing me to it. I love how God sends and resends messages, and I pray you are able to rest in His embrace as you walk each day of the battle.

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    1. Thank you for stopping by Mandy. I'm so glad it provided a blessing, and than you for your encouraging words in return. Joel 2:25 is precious to me and I cling to it when I'm tempted to lose heart over all that "wasn't", but He not only restores the years, I believe He uses each and every experience we are going through in the here and now for His glory. So when I become restless or anxious for answers, He gives me that word "trust" and I remember again that He's in control and so I truly can rest in His embrace.

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