Wednesday, November 1st
Devotional written by Pastor Brian Williams, Young Adults Pastor
TRUST = FREEDOM
Trust requires risk. We trust in various ways daily, each representing a risk we are willing to take, a moment of adventure where the outcome is hoped for but not yet proved. To live and love like Jesus is to risk our comfort, security, or dignity in the hope that God loves us, will provide for us, and is smarter than us. He cares about the most mundane aspects of our lives and does not scold us for bringing our basic needs to His attention.
Is the One who created and saved us not also worthy of our trust to provide the basic things we need? This prayer is not an abandonment of planning, as Jesus recognizes the sensibility of planning in Luke 14:28-33, but an abandonment of finding our security in such plans and thus opting out of the freedom He has in mind for us. As Paul asserts, there is greater security in trusting in Christ than in earthly comforts. All too often, I get distracted from the purposes of God because I am so occupied with securing for myself the comforts I fear losing. Yet, as Paul wrote to the Philippian church, the secret to contentment in all things is Christ, not comfort. To live and love like Jesus is to hope in God’s character and competence, risk self-gained assurances, and trust that His ways are higher than mine and His plans more eternally potent.
This could not be more exemplified than in the act of forgiveness. Trusting God’s ability to exact justice and His discernment in extending mercy feels like a massive risk for someone who has been wounded. Indeed, it is a big risk, and still, the burden to make those judgments is on Him, not us (Romans 14, 1 Cor. 4, James 4). His forgiveness far exceeds our worthiness of it. Who are we to withhold from others what we have so generously been given? If Jesus forgave me, then to live and love like Him is to forgive others and to trust and hope in His character and competence to judge us rightly.
Reflection: List the things you are grateful for. Thank God for providing each of those things. Then, list the sins someone has committed against you whom you need to forgive. Cross off those you have ever committed in some form or fashion, and for any that may remain, ask God to judge what to do with that person in light of those sins.