One of the valuable lessons that I learned from a spiritual dad of mine, was to trust only in God. Don’t trust people. No one. And coming from him, he meant himself, too! One of the first things he encouraged me to do, was to do a study in the Bible on the subject. Needless to say, the weight of encouragement to trust God is overwhelming. He simply cannot fail to do the right thing, always. He is love, always. He is consistent in character, always. We may have false expectations about how He functions, or have illusions that need to be shattered, but that does not change His absolute perfect integrity of being the one and only “I Am” in our existence.
Now apart from this divine perfection, obviously people cannot be trusted in the same way. There may be a willingness to do the right thing, but sometimes they become weak, fearful, or deceived, and they do what they do not want to do in a moment of passion. Whether that means falling asleep at the greatest time a friend needs support, playing around with a neighbor’s wife, or slaying someone with negative words behind their back, even the best of the best have, or eventually will, do something shocking and inconsistent with their general nature. “Shocking” not to God – but to those who hold themselves and others up to a perfect, consistent standard that only He lives by.
I think the more we understand this difference between trusting God, versus trusting people, the more we are to able to walk in forgiveness, both for ourselves, and for people who hurt and disappoint us. It should for all intensive purposes soften our heart, not harden it!
In fact, knowing the difference frees us to love without expectation, and have relationships that are anchored in the love of God. He obviously knows the hearts of people, and sees them fail miserably at times (yourself, too, right?), and yet He doesn’t withdraw the warmth of His love from us. Benefits, perhaps, and He may sadly watch us suffer some consequences for a bit. But overall there is still an amazing sense that God has nonetheless “entrusted” Himself to us, regardless of His inability to “trust” the human nature. I mean seriously, knowing what He knows, He still puts us in charge of caring for this earth, and of raising children, and most surprising of all… bearing His Name and being His spokesperson?
I’m amazed and thankful that God dwells inside my mess, so how dare I not feel the same for someone else because of their mess.