understanding

I don’t know about you, but I can hardly look at my social media feeds these days. Everybody is mad about something. And if they are not mad about something, then they’ve got an opinion about everything!

Now don’t get me wrong. I’ve certainly got a lot of opinions. Especially at a time like this with an election just a few weeks away. It’s just that I’m not inclined to spout off my opinions all over the interwebs. I figure if you want to know what I think, you will ask me. And if you don’t ask, then there’s plenty of other stuff we can talk about.

However, all this political ranting and worry and assorted craziness did get me thinking about where I’m putting my trust. Or what I’m relying on for my future. And how can I tell when this is out of whack?

The writer of Proverbs reminds me,

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
    and he will make your paths straight.

Proverbs 3:5-6

3 Ways to Tell When I’m Leaning

So, when I find myself in doubt or fearful about the future, I try to check in with where my head and my heart are at. Here’s what I sometimes find…

I’m not trusting with all my heart. It’s awfully easy to fool myself. I think I am trusting wholeheartedly, but when I look a little deeper, I find that I am still holding a little back. Am I afraid to give my whole tithe because something might come up this month? Do I say that I trust God with the outcome, and then still try to make things work out the way I think they ought to? When the answer to these types of questions is yes, then I know I’m not trusting with all my heart.

I’m leaning on my own understanding. See, here’s where I really get myself in trouble. I like to think I’m pretty smart. But the reality is that I don’t know everything. I’m sure that is shocking to all of you! 🙂 God’s got his hand in all kinds of things that I can’t even imagine, let alone know how they may affect me at some point in the future. So you see, my own understanding is not always what it’s cracked up to be. When I’m relying on my own understanding, then I know I’m not leaning on God.

I’m not willing to submit. Obedience is hard. Nobody is going to argue with that. The thing I keep reminding myself is that obedience can also be easy. It’s easy to follow the One who loves me more than anyone else and who will always make the best decision for me. Obedience brings me into line with God’s will for my life. When I’m being rebellious, then I know I’m not really walking in obedience.

The Outcome of Understanding

Here’s the good news…when I trust Him beyond all else, when I lean on His understanding and not my own, and when I willingly submit to His will, He makes all my paths straight. At that point, I don’t have to doubt or worry or fear what’s coming next. It’s not that the state of our country doesn’t matter or that I don’t care. I do. Rather, it’s that worrying about the state of affairs around me just isn’t going to put any doubt or fear to rest. But putting my faith and trust in God will.

And that’s the place I want to live. 

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maryhillIt’s always such an honor to be featured on a sweet friend’s blog. Today I’m featured over at Mary Hill’s blog, Mary-andering Creatively. The post is an interview I did with Mary as part of her #write31days series about women who inspire a closer walk with Christ. Enjoy my featured post HERE. Thanks for having me, Mary!

 

 

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Holly Barrett


Walk in Integrity
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