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  • Katie Smith

Don't trust anyone?

There were two people, one "handshake", one promise, one end result, but two different stories. I remember vividly wondering how two people could claim their side of the story was true and the other one a lie when neither stories could coexist. One person said 2 +2 = 4, and the other person said 2 + 2 = 5. Neither seemed to be deceptive though, and neither seemed to falter in their beliefs. Still, both contradicting stories came forward openly. I reconciled that one had to at least be deceiving himself. On the other hand, I realized that our minds, emotions, and feelings can deceive us, even with the best of intentions. We trust in whatever we choose to tell ourselves is true. This is the scary power of reasoning fused with pride.

Because of this scenario, the fear of falsehood was imbedded deep in my psyche as a young child. I loathed lying, and assumed because of this hatred, I was above living a lie myself. I became someone who gave too much info in order to pose as an open book. If I couldn't trust you, though, I wouldn't get too close. Thankfully, God let me fall hard enough to see my own hypocrisy. He pulled back my veil, and showed me how to trust.

I'm often asked, after sharing my own story, how I learned to trust my spouse after such revealed betrayal. The answer is not an easy formula. 2+2 for me may look like 3+1 for you, but the end result is the same. I didn't learn to trust my husband or anyone else any better, I learned that I didn't need to trust anyone. I needed to trust God. I had put too much faith in people. People, myself included, always disappoint you because we are prone to fallacy.

Now this is not to say you should become a ragdoll thrown and abused by every immature toddler who finds you. Rather, their is a singular confidence in Christ that gives you permission to trust His guiding hand in all circumstances and relationships. With His great help, you'll know whom to associate with and whom to confide. You'll know when to separate and come away, and when to stay and embrace. You'll discover that trusting Him leads you to forgive and see clearly what in fact is true or false.

As Oswald Chambers aptly records, "Our Lord never put His trust in any person. Yet He was never suspicious, never bitter, and never lost hope for anyone, because He put His trust in God first. He trusted absolutely in what God’s grace could do for others. If I put my trust in human beings first, the end result will be my despair and hopelessness toward everyone" (Utmost for His Highest Devo, May 31).

It's easy to shake our head and finger when we hear about adulterous duplicity associated with our religious and political leaders. We can become jaded by how often we hear of it in the news, or even choose the opposite extreme and engage openly in licentious behavior. However, pride, whether in honest revelry or strict morality is still a problem creating more dishonesty and distrust. Humility is the only healing balm.

The Bible speaks often of "false teachers," (read 2 Peter 2) and their outcome sounds hauntingly just. How do we live in a world with so much dishonesty and disappointment then? Instead of wallowing in the evils of today, we can live and rest in joyful peace, knowing that we always have someone guarding us from lies because He cannot lie.

"Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed it with an oath.God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope set before us may be greatly encouraged. We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure (Hebrews 6:17-19).

When our anchor doesn't change, then it doesn't matter if the people around us are constantly changing their philosophies and beliefs; we keep our eyes toward an unchanging God. Instead of focusing on our changing bodies, changing finances, or changing relationships, we keep focusing on bettering our relationship with God, we stay nearer to Truth than anyone else.

Then we can "test" the things of this world (1 John 4) to see what is genuine, but we ourselves must be careful not to think we are above such falsehoods. "Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may be able to prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God" (Romans 12:2).

If you are wondering how to trust someone again who has deeply wounded you, don't look to that person to earn your trust through words or even actions, look to God to see where His grace leads you. He will never leave or forsake you, and where He leads, you can follow.

Here's where our summer is leading...

~Carefully Careless

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