"Trust in the LORD with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
6 in all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make your paths straight." Proverbs 3:5-6
This is a fairly common Proverb. It gets quoted a lot, and I know I've used it plenty of times to bolster my faith and help me to believe that I can truly trust in the Lord.
But do you see that part where it throws in that one word? It says ALL. In fact, it says all twice!
First, it says trust in the Lord with ALL your heart. Oh, that is so hard to do sometimes, isn't it. I know for myself, I want to trust in God at every moment, but there are so many times where that doubt just creeps in, and I just find it so impossible to fully trust. Even right now. Right now, Andy is in the time of the year with work where work is running out. He could potentially have just two weeks of work left... and I'm trying so hard to just trust God completely to provide for us. I'm trying to trust that Andy has enough work lined up to keep the income rolling in...but it's difficult. When you're used to that regular paycheck coming in each and every week on a certain day, and you know how much exactly you need to continue from month to month, that trust needs to come from a very deep place. Most of the time, I have been doing okay. I know that God has plans for Andy if he's not working at his normal job. I know that, and most days that I think on that I make sure that I give thanks to God for Andy's skill set that enables him to provide even when not actively employed.
But there are those days where I look at the checkbook. I look at the calendar. I look at the monthly expenses, and I get nervous, and I try to think on my own what I could possibly do to help out. And I almost get a moment of panic or anxiety. But then the Holy Spirit swoops in and reminds me that God is in control, and I let Him wrap me up in peace and calm, and I ask Him to help me with my unbelief. And I also ask Him to stretch my understanding- I would love for God to work in some very unexpected ways so that we can share with others exactly what He has done for us to get us through.
But then we go on in these two verses and we find the word all again! As if once wasn't enough to stretch our way of thinking, now we see it a second time, and it tells us that we are to acknowledge Him in ALL our ways. Every time we are at a juncture in life- a moment of decisions, are we talking to God? Are we asking Him which path to take? We should be. We should be consulting Him every step of the way because then, when we are asked by others about it, we have the perfect answer.
When we were looking to move, there was only one real criteria for us in where to move. We wanted to be within a certain radius of the city we are now living in. That turned out to be a pretty big area, and consisted of probably two dozen communities that potentially could be called home for us. But God knew exactly where He wanted us, and we relied on Him completely to show us the right house, and the right path to get there. When people ask us what brought us to Appleton, we can honestly say that God brought us here. God made this path straight and clear for us, and He gets all the glory for bringing us here. Every day as I drive around my new city I find myself so incredibly thankful- I love where we live sooo much. Really, I think all the time that God brought us to our paradise for now, and I thank Him daily for showing us exactly where we needed to be.
We acknowledge God in all our ways when they are big ways- but what about the everyday? I was thinking about that yesterday, as this verse clearly says ALL our ways- it doesn't just say when there is a big decision to be made. It says in all our ways. The other day I talked on one of my blogs about how we used September as a no-spend month to try and save a little money. In the blog post, I also talked about making wise decisions when it comes to spending- and that's the perfect example of acknowledging God with a little path.
Do you know what He did? I expected that He'd maybe provide a little extra money so that I could pick up a few things. Instead, He provided the clothes themselves. He literally filled the back of my van with bag upon bag of clothing for my children- including the much needed winter clothing. Had I not waited, had I not talked to God and asked Him to show me the best path, I could have very well missed out on that blessing. Those clothes could have gone to someone else. Instead, I trusted God with all my heart that He saw that my children needed clothing, and I let Him direct my path. And God came through in such a big way that only He could get glory for the abundance of clothing that flowed through our home.
And so this morning I wake up and tackle my day with a heart full of trust. God loves me, and He loves my family, and as each day passes, I feel that love more and more. He provides in some mysterious ways sometimes, but that's one of the many things that makes God so awesome. Those mysterious ways sometimes turn out to be the most exciting- and make for the best storytelling. May God show you some wonderful and amazing ways this weekend. Trust in Him with all your heart, and you will not be disappointed.