I experienced something amazing Monday morning. I spent the weekend in Charlotte with some very dear friends watching the Mediocre Bowl (not really super I’d say). But the lack of offensive prowess this past Sunday is not what I’m here to talk about. Monday morning, I woke up early and headed out. Had some wonderful breakfast at Caribou Coffee while doing my daily scripture feeding. I’m telling you, the word of God comes alive with a cup o’ joe, the low hum of strangers, and the light whisper of soft rock caressing your ears. Now that my eyes were open, I got back on the road. I rolled up to 4330 Westmont Drive and came to a stop at the guard house. After being welcomed with open arms and getting a few simple directions, the arm was raised and I entered. Now, I fully acknowledge that it would be an amazing sight no matter how it happens, but I think my experience was heightened because of a God with a wonderful understanding of irony. You see, as I crested the little hill and rounded the curve, Tenth Avenue North’s song “Stars in the Night” crescendoed to its chorus. And as I looked up at the glass cross that covers the front of the Billy Graham Library, Mike Donehey sang, “Hallelujah! We’re running to you on fire from the Mercy in Your eyes.”
It was breathtaking. I went inside and did the tour. If you’ve never been…you must go! Its such a beautiful presentation! They’ve done an amazing job putting this place together. I had several revelations walking through but the most important one to me is the one that I’d like to share with you today. You see, I actually was dropping off a resume for a job application and it kept coming to my mind throughout the experience. I kept thinking about how scripture tells us, in Mark 11:24, “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”
Thats terrifying isn’t it? Here I have this BIG thing, a job application, and I am going to pray that it is received well and I get the job. But I also have to believe that it is already mine? That makes me nervous in all my humanity. I mean, what if it isn’t God’s will, what if I did something wrong and I don’t get the job, what if I get another job in the meantime and have to turn this one down, what if turning this one down is a horrible mistake?!?! Sorry…I freaked out there for a minute. As I walked through what the library calls, “The Journey of Faith”, I thought about all these things.
Then, a video.
A video of Billy Graham’s prayer/speech from the 9-11 memorial. This is the single sentence that they played and the one that has revolutionized my way of thinking.
My prayer today is that we will feel the loving arms of God wrapped around us and that as we Trust in Him we will know in our hearts that He will never forsake us.
First and foremost, I believe this. Secondly…I can’t believe he spoke of trusting in God so cavalier as this nation reeled from one of the most devastating tragedies in our long history. And thats when it hit me. You see, as poor little humans, we are always asking things like, “why do bad things happen to good people”, or “if God is so good then why did my daughter die”, or “why does He give us the choice if He knows that the wrong choice ends in eternal death”. And those are legitimate questions. In the face of such great tragedies, it is also not at all surprising that we would ask if this is really where we should put our hope and as Christians, is God really where we have put our hope.
My favorite college professor used to always refer to the difference between capitalized and un-capitalized versions of words. At first, it really confused me, but now it means a lot to me and I use it all the time. For example, I have little-“l” love for everyone I know. God has big-“L” Love for all of us. That kind of thing. Now, we have finally arrived at my lesson.
The foundation of my faith as a Christian is Trust. I Trust that God sent His son. I Trust that that son lived 33 years and then was murdered. I Trust that He was dead three days. I Trust that on that third day He rose again. I Trust that He knows what is best for me and is always interceding in my life to keep me close to Him and to the One who sent Him. This is the bedrock. But then, within that, there is trust. Little-“t” trust. I trust that God will provide this job at the library to me. I trust that God will take care of everyone I love. I trust that God will prove Himself and be accepted by everyone I know and love. All these things, these little-“t” trusts, they can fall apart right in front of my eyes. I might not get the job, I might lose someone I love to an accident or an illness, I might lose someone and know that they had not accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior. But that is when I realize something fundamental: this trust that has just been violated in no way affects my Trust in God.
I think of it like a bike tire.
My fundamental, foundational, capital-“T” Trust is the hub of the bike tire. My temperamental, little-“t” trusts are the spokes. They come out from the hub, my central Trust. If I break a spoke, I can fix it or I can get a new one.
So this is my epiphany and my truth for the week. It is entirely possible, in the course of a human life to see your trust in God take a hit. But if you truly have a relationship with Christ Jesus, His Father, and the Holy Spirit…your Trust will remain as strong as ever.
And we must always remember, that when from human eyes it seems our trust has taken a major blow, it may be just in that exact moment that He is most delivering on the thing we have trusted Him with.
trust in God. Trust in God.
*Suggested Listening: “Trust in You” by Lauren Daigle and “Stars in the Night” by Tenth Avenue North