By Aaron Elder
What does trust look like? Until recently, trust, to me, meant having an intellectual Bible answer for everything in my life. I knew the equations that make life work well. However, failure at something significant in your life has a way of making you go back to double-check your answers. For the previous five years, I worked as a financial advisor. I suspect that the duration is of no consequence to you – but for me, five years was supposed to be something of a magic milestone. The failure rate as a financial advisor during years 0 – 5 is close to 90%. Once somebody reaches five years, the rate flips. The rate of success jumps to well over 90%.
Just over a year ago, I found myself in the unenviable position of confessing to my wife that we were accumulating debt because there wasn’t enough money to pay for the business and our household expenses. What was supposed to bring unlimited opportunity to our family, brought the opportunity to fail in a way that was a statistical anomaly. Somebody get me a medal.
I was at a proverbial fork in the road. What I didn’t know at the time, was that my vocational fork in the road was masking a reality – this was much more about a spiritual fork. I am deeply grateful to friends and family who helped me work through the ways God has gifted me. And I had a choice to make. Accept a similar role to what I had been doing with more financial potential and in the place I was familiar with, or a role that appeared to be a better fit for me (no promises!) in a location where I knew just 1 family.
Spiritually, I had a similar choice to make. Dig my heels into the comfortable equations I trusted in or let them go and…??
Under the hood, I see this spiritual fork presented to me in Psalm 4. It is delusional to think that having all of the right answers is what God is calling me to – it would amount to trusting a false god (v.2). The invitation is to put the equations on the shelf and know Jesus more (vv. 4-5). To trust him so much that I stop asking, “Where will my prosperity come from?” but rather experience his delight no matter who prospers (or doesn’t) around me (vv. 6-7). It is in that place of trust that I can lie down, sleep, and weather any storm knowing that I dwell securely in the love of Jesus (v.8).