“Trust in the LORD and do good. Then you will live safely in the land and prosper. Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you your heart’s desires. Commit everything you do to the LORD. Trust him, and he will help you.” – Psalm 37:3-5 (NLT)
Let’s be honest. Most of us can read a scripture like this one and immediately agree in principle with what we’ve read – trusting the Lord is the smart choice. But check in with us five minutes later and we’ve already gone back to “life as normal.” We’re back in crisis mode, solving problems left and right, setting up contingency plans for the latest decisions to be made and disappointments to be averted. We can give mental ascent to the idea of trusting God, but for some reason it’s terribly hard to shut down the grind and simply trust him. Trusting God is a choice. And sometimes it’s a very tough one to make.
So let’s stop right now and zero in on three things Psalm 37:3-5 tells us to do when we find ourselves inclined to “mind grind” a problem. Instead of fretting and figuring when you feel a sense of worry coming on, do these things instead:
Trust in the Lord and then DO Good. Saying you trust God in your situation is one thing. Acting in accordance with that statement can be quite another. But it’s essential if you’re going to make progress in seeing the Lord come through for you. Start telling your body that it’s going to act in accordance with your decision to trust God. So, if you’ve decided you’re going to trust the Lord for your financial provision, maybe today is the day you stop checking your budget and your bank balance twenty times. Check it once, pray over it, speak the truth to it and then get on with your day! Maybe you’re trusting God for a spouse. Stop letting your desire to be married drive your social calendar. Your desire to be married doesn’t mean you need to go out every night, staying out until all the prospects have been considered. If you trust God, act like it. Command your body to do things in line with the trust you’ve declared. Stop allowing your body to be commanded by fear.
Take DELIGHT in the Lord. Make this a habit starting right now: Whenever you have an anxious idea pop into your head, say out loud – “I won’t think that. I’m so thankful right now that God has done ______ for me.” Fill in the blank. Setting our minds on the things God has done can drive away worry and anxiety about what we’re still waiting on him to do. Our hope gets lifted and our confidence in God’s ability surges. Be a person who focuses on gratitude. Make mental lists of all the great and amazing things the Lord has done. Be intentional about seeing the goodness of God in the land of the living. When we’re habitually finding things to delight in the Lord about, the next thing to delight about will be just around the corner. Jesus told us worry doesn’t do a single helpful thing for us. Take him at his word, and start trusting that he will make a way for you each and every time you face a challenge.
Commit EVERYTHING to God. The good and the bad. When something great happens, thank him for it. When something bad happens, give it to him and ask him to fix it. God considers it his job to work out worrisome things for you. He doesn’t get irritated when you can’t figure something out on your own. He doesn’t mind that you need help. He’s actually sitting patiently waiting for you to ask for what you need. He delights to help you! 1 Peter 5:7 tells us to cast all our cares on him because he cares for us. Cares – not just as an emotion, but as an action verb! God gets to work caring for us in an active way whenever we trust him enough to commit the situation to him. Like the Message version of 1 Thessalonians 5:24 says, “The One who called you is completely dependable. If he said it, he’ll do it!”
So get out there today and actively trust God! Do something that demonstrates your trust in God instead of turning on the mind grind. Delight in him as you remember how he has come through for you in the past. Commit every worry and every problem that needs solving to him. And get ready to see him come through for you.