The phrase ‘I love you’ is one I hear fairly frequently.
It’s a phrase I know some think is overused and some treat with caution. It’s a phrase that some people treasure more than a lot of things in life.
There is, however, another phrase which is inextricably linked to that expression which has even deeper consequences. That phrase is: I trust you.
It’s difficult to love and not trust, but that doesn’t stop many from trying to do one without the other. Yet the test of love is expressed in trust. The offer is implied – if you love me, you must trust me. The degree of your trust is a great indicator of the degree of your love.
Recently I noticed something amazing about the grace of God. Unmerited in nature it is not given without purpose. In the context of the loving relationship the Father has with His children in giving of Himself to us He implicitly trusts us to make the most of Him in our daily lives. Even when we fail, He is not stingy in giving more opportunities to experience Him and the trust He gives in us making the most of Him.
How do I know that? He gives me food and trusts me to know when to eat, how much to eat, how to eat, with whom I share the eating experience for His glory and the benefit of others. He trusts me to know – He even guides me through His Word and through good people He places in my life even in something as seemingly trivial as the food I eat. It would be easy for Him to display a lack of trust. He could just withdraw. Yet even in my flawed approaches, missing the signals, sometimes blatantly choosing to rebel against Him, He does not withdraw. He does not condemn and reject me, even as others would be minded to do. When my actions or inaction leads me to the pits of despair and helplessness, even if it’s not my fault, He does not withdraw. He gives glimpses of His trust in the myriad so-called ‘small mercies’ that are humongous displays of His love towards me and His trust in me.
That is amazing. That is overwhelming.
Rather than dwelling on the ‘why’ aspect of it all, He wants me to accept and embrace that trust and in the light of that walk in the love that trusts, even as He expresses it. That’s where the tricky part comes in exactly because of my reluctance to acknowledge His trust and the culture of a lack of trust that runs throughout the world in which I live.
It’s this love, however, that knows forgiveness, healing, restoration and the ability to share that with others in a community of grace that practices this kind of love.
That’s the power of trust.
For His Name’s Sake
C. L. J. Dryden