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In God We... Trust?

For the first time in a while I feel compelled to blog. Not sure why I've been in a posting drought over the last couple of months, but here I am, ready to keep this nearly 6 year old experiment going.

The funny thing about this is that I'm sitting at home computerless, having forgotten to grab my laptop when I left my office. I don't want to drive all the way back there in the cold to get it, so I'm sitting here pecking out this whole thing with my thumbs on a little Blackberry phone. So you'd better dang sure enjoy this post!

My life has been a whirlwind, but that's par for the course. I spend my days around college students trying to live like I understand the mysteries of God. I'm preparing to have my life changed by the people of Rwanda, Africa, this summer. I have an amazing girlfriend who is showing me what my own faith journey has been all about. I wrestle with the conceptual oddities of life like the idea of buying a house. I meet with a spiritual mentor every week who is blowing my mind by simply being real with his own struggles.

So, as always, things are a wild milieu of this, that, and everything. In the midst of that, I suppose I haven't identified profound ruminations that I can elucidate here for all the world to marvel at. The more we bury ourselves into the trenches of life, the more we realize that we truly have very little to say except to ask all the people around us to teach us. The farther I get into the real world of campus ministry the more I realize that I know very little and that I need to be always learning from those who are trying to teach me, the students most of all.

This brings us to the idea of trust, which has been rolling around in my head for years. There are many layers to trust - the hardest of which to grasp being that of trust in God. It's unfortunate that "trust in God" has become a cliche statement, because I'm not sure that most of us have even a sliver of a clue about what it really means. We throw around "trust in God" like it's an obvious concept, but then proceed to live lives that are entirely based on what we can do for ourselves. We trust ourselves for provision, money, love, relationships, understanding, knowledge, security, and just about any other pursuit that we deem has any value to life.

This has many applications, but as someone who lives out life largely around college students, I see this particularly clearly when it comes to love. Living life alone is a pervasive fear of young adults, particularly in this culture that places enormous social ramifications on the idea of being with someone. Being single is equal to being without; being incomplete. I see this pressure bear down on students, sometimes to the point of depression and extreme self-deprecation. It often results in extreme despair that stalls out life or a relentless, neverending pursuit that immediately sizes up the potential of anyone who crosses their gaze.

In the midst of this, even for some who claim to love God with all of their heart, "trust in God" is an absolutely foreign idea. I may love God and know that he is above all and in all, that he is who perfects us, fills us, completes us, and owns us--so the idea goes--but when it comes to finding a guy or girl, it is ALL ME, and I better sure get on it now because everyone knows that the older you get, the worse off you'll be. Who wants to be the 30 year old shriveled shrew or creepy old man who is still single because I didn't snag a mate when I was 20? *shudder*

Suddenly, the concept of God truly being the provider of everything we need exactly when we need it becomes extremely foreign and it becomes a matter of our own determinations about what we need and when. I counsel with students who will gladly pray for God's guidance, provision, and direction all day long but will shriek at the thought of the possibility of being 25 and single. And the disparity between the two is not apparent in the least.

What does it look like to truly trust God? We need to keep asking ourselves this. If God truly is to be trusted to be our Father, then we need to believe that the Father knows how to give good gifts to his children, and when. The father also knows what gifts need to be given and what gifts don't. Do we trust him to actually know the difference? True relationship with God is not about selectively entrusting a certain set of things to God. It's about giving him control of everything and knowing that he is going to do exactly what is best for you, even often times when you think it is not. This is a discipline that is hard to come by. I'm a long way from it.

Let God have control. He'll do a better job than you will any day. I guarantee it.

That's all for now. My thumbs are sore.


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