trusting god in painful places

Trusting God in Painful Places

(First published in 2016.)


Are you trusting God?

If you had asked me last week if I was trusting God in painful places, I probably would have said, “Yes” without much hesitation. I mean God has taken me through some lengthy trust-testing trials that have demanded a lot of me and my family. No doubt about it. But recently, God challenged that ready “Yes” response.

You see, it’s easy to say we trust God until the life of a loved one is on the line.

All week, I’ve been a mess over some awful circumstances hanging over a loved one. Many mornings, I’ve awakened to wave upon wave of fear-soaked adrenaline surging through my first semi-conscious thoughts. It has been a battle to get through each day without my mind submerged in the fear, grief, and pain of the situation.

I’ve prayed all the prayers and claimed all the promises, but sometimes God calls us beyond formulaic answers to deeper levels of faith and trust.

Sometimes God calls us beyond formulaic answers to deeper levels of faith and trust. Share on X


trusting god in painful places

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What Trust Means

So today I’m learning — from scratch, it feels like — what trusting God means:

  • Trust releases loved ones into God’s care. It allows God to provide what they need, when and how they need it. It allows Him to shape and grow them, to conform them to Christ. Trust allows them to suffer.

Trust is letting go —

— of control, anger, fear, and outcomes. Trust submits to God’s sovereign rule over souls and circumstances. It leads us to surrender our most beloved “possessions” because they belong to Him.

Because He does.

  • Trust takes the teeth out of trials because it prays, hopes, and rejoices in the certainty that God is good, just, and faithful.
  • Trust doesn’t wake up gasping in fear and it doesn’t walk around in worry.
Trust is a choice to live out what we say we believe about the heart and character of God. Share on X
  • Trust is a gift from a wise God who knows that trust is most powerful when it is most needed.
  • Trust is transcendent because the God who inspires it is transcendentIt knows that God reigns and works from an aerial view and an eternal timeline, so it accepts His justice and expects His mercy.
  • Trust glorifies God because it acknowledges His compassion, love, and faithfulness.
  • Trust blesses God’s heart because it honors His Name.
Trust blesses God's heart because it honors His Name. Share on X

And it inspires those around us to do the same.

I’m beginning to learn what trusting God means. Today if you asked me about my trust in God, my response would be different. Instead of that ready, “Yes,”  you’d hear, “I’m learning . . .”


Question: What about you? What or whom will you trust God with today?


Featured image courtesy of Bekah Russom.

Comments 4

  1. Each trial is a revisit of trust. But where I really have a difficult time trusting is in all the future ‘what-ifs’ that I imagine. There is a song that says, ‘your grace abounds in deepest water.’ That sweet, amazing grace that holds me when I fear, that comforts me when I cry, that leads me to trust when the sea is dark. My prayers lately have been for me to keep my focus on the breadth of His grace and not on the power of the trial. thanks Bethany for faithfully sharing who God is.

    1. Thanks for sharing your helpful insight. Each trial is indeed a revisit of trust. I think that’s where I get stuck–I am surprised by the level of trust needed. Even after many years of walking with Christ, eaxh revisitation of the call to trust feels like starting in kindergarten all over again.

  2. Bethany,

    Beautiful words that adequately describe the lesson I’ve been learning my whole life.
    Trusting the Lord even in this….fill in the blank. This past week, I’ve had to trust him on multiple levels. My good health was at the top of that list. And not feeling well kept me from being in God’s Word each day to put on the armor of God. Even so, I knew He was present and understood my concerns. For once, I didn’t wrestle with what ifs. Instead, I rested in His sovereignty. That’s a huge spiritual growth spurt for me. Although, I have to admit, I am more likely to trust God with my own health than the safety and health of my loved ones. That’s my Achilles heal.

    1. I think it’s all of our Achilles heel. Since it struck at the safety and life of one I love so dearly, it really brought me to my knees. But trusting God is a vital part of spiritual growth and intimate communion with Him, so no matter if suffering hits our loved ones or our own daily life, deep transformative trust is needed–wherever we are. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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