[This is the conclusion to Monday’s post, Trust Me.]
So, in what can we trust?
Firstly what it is not:
- I cannot trust that I will find a parking space.
- I cannot trust that I will get that job I want.
- I cannot trust that my life will go well.
- I cannot trust that I will be spared serious illness and death.
- I cannot trust that I will have friends and lovers, and that I will not be lonely.
- I cannot trust that being good will earn me any special favours from God.
At the moment, when I think of trust:
I think of the whole Universe and how this body and every particle in it must remember that awesome heritage: the Big Bang, the formation of stars, the sunrise on this rotating, coagulated Earth and, eventually, briefly, for the moment, tiny, tiny, tiny me.
I think of how, in all this time, nothing has been lost.
I remember Ps 103:
14 For You know how we were made;
You remember that we are dust.
15 As for mortals, our days are like grass;
we flourish like a flower of the field;
16 for the wind passes over it, and it is gone,
and its place knows it no more.
17 But the steadfast love of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting…
God, I think of all the people I have seen dead or at death’s lintel and how near You seemed to all of them.
I think of how we are all so close to that edge, so fragile, so vulnerable, so blind, and how You abandon none of us.
I think that each of us is not what we think we are, that our little concerns are misplaced, that we have missed the point, are facing the wrong way, wasting our lives and our attention on our little projects and dramas because we do not know how to trust You.
I know that however bad things become You will always be with me.
So how do we trust? Practice.
- Feel into this body: Who or what do you trust? Where in your body do you feel this trust? What are the physical sensations of this trust? Start here. Extend this sensation of trust towards God.
- Start small: Trust is no more than a little opening of the heart. Practice this.
- Just for now: Don’t worry about tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow. Practise that little opening for this moment.
- Gently does it: Trust is not black or white, either you do or you don’t. Trust, like conversion is a slow, day-by-day process. You are never finished, but that’s ok. Just make a small start.
- Celebrate: God does not berate you for your lack of trust. Don’t be arrogant enough to make yourself a harsher critic than God. Recognise the ways you do trust God and be thankful for this.
- Repeat: Take another small step, or the same one, over and over.