There are times when I struggle with trusting God, so it’s something I’m constantly working to get better at.
I invest time in His word. I thank and praise Him for His goodness, faithfulness and generosity. I try to take every thought captive and hold them up against the truth of His word. When I feel myself getting worried or anxious over my circumstances, I re-focus my eyes on Him. I have a long way to go, but I’m getting better.
While learning to trust God is crucial, there’s another question that’s just as important: Can God trust me?
I personally don’t know anyone who wouldn’t like to have more money or more influence or more answers to prayer or more success. I wonder what would happen though if God granted us the desires of our hearts.
What would happen if God answered your most passionate prayers? Would the world be a better place? Or would you just have more stuff and be more comfortable?
How would you handle 10x the amount of money you have now? It’s tempting to think we’d be wonderfully generous with a large amount of money, but if we’re not generous with the amount we have now, that won’t change if we’re given more.
Psalm 37:4 says, “Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.”
When we delight in Him, He shapes our desires to be like His. If we’re not delighting in Him, then more than likely, our desires are more selfish in nature. And those aren’t the desires He grants.
In 2002, a West Virginia man won the Powerball jackpot of $315 million. Ten years later, his daughter and granddaughter were dead from drug overdoses. He’d also been sued multiple times. And once while he was at a strip club, someone drugged him and stole over half a million dollars in cash from his car. He later said, “I wish I’d torn that ticket up.”
Unfortunately, that story is not unique. Many lottery winners, professional athletes and celebrities get into a great deal of trouble as the result of their sudden great wealth and fame.
Of course, our natural reaction is to think that wouldn’t happen to us. We’d be different. We could handle the fame. The money wouldn’t change us. We’d be generous. We’d use it for good. And I’m pretty sure that’s what everyone says.
Great wealth or power or influence without character to match will crush us. It will also make us even more accountable to God. There’s a principle in His Kingdom: “Whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them.” (Matthew 13:12)
If we can’t be trusted with what God has already given us, then why would He entrust us with more?
Maybe some of the answers to prayer God withholds are a form of protection, because He knows we can’t be trusted. We want a greater assignment, which requires greater resources, but we don’t have the needed character. Romans 5:1-5 says…
Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.
Character development for God-sized assignments takes time. It requires persevering through times of suffering, pain or confusion. It means being faithful with what we’ve already been given. It means learning to think more like God does. It’s a process of bringing our values in line with the values of His Kingdom.
So how are you doing with what you already have?
- Are you seeking God and delighting in Him?
- Are you sacrificially loving your husband or wife?
- Are you raising your children to know Jesus?
- Are you using your current level of influence for the advancement of God’s Kingdom?
- Do you honor God with your wealth by giving generously?
- Do you treat those around you with love and respect?
- Do you use your time wisely and make the most of the opportunities God has given you?
- Are you grateful to God for what He’s already given you?
The question really isn’t: can God be trusted?
The real question is…can you?