Saturday, March 17, 2007

TRUST - God's Perfect Work in You

Trust and faith go together. You can't have one without the other. While I've always had a form of faith, because I've always hoped, trust is harder for me. I'm starting to see where God has planted seeds in my heart, preparing me to trust in Him. This process has been going on for five years, and I'm still working at it.

One aspect to overcoming the obstacle to trust is my general inclination to analyze everything. The flesh in me wants to understand why a particular path, event, or conversation occurred. As writers, we are fascinated with what makes people "tick" and the motives behind their actions. This helps us create believable characters. My imagination begins to analyze all the possible scenarios of how my situation could end up. While this analysis is great for writing stories, it's awful in building trust and faith.

I'll never forget two years ago when God spoke to me and said, "You always come to me expecting the worst." I paused and thought about this statement. It completely took me by surprise. Of course, I had to analyze this. Did I? How many of you have tried to argue with the Holy Spirit? I tried to justify my behavior. Well, I've prayed about this and that and look where's it's gotten me? What do you expect? I listed all my disappointments before the Lord. After that, every time I sat down to pray, I wondered, Am I sending up empty prayers, fully expecting to be disappointed again? I can tell you, I was.

I had no doubt that God could answer my prayers, I doubted that it was His will to do so. It got to the point where my confidence was dwindling and my faith fading fast. If I had a conversation with anyone, I would say, "If the Lord is willing...." I said this so much that I was driving down the road and God said, "Why wouldn't I be willing?" I had gotten to the point where I didn't think it was God's will to do anything "good" for me.

What does this have to do with writing? Nothing and everything. If we don't have characters who struggle with their faith, we can't have God redeem them and bring them to a place of trust and understanding. God has given us experiences and testimonies to bring us through our own growth process, and will help us use it in our writing to help others. I think of it as planting seeds in the minds of readers. They will store away our words of wisdom for a time when they need it most in their lives. The Holy Spirit will remind them.

If you don't know what you're suppose to be writing, your brand, or your niche in the publishing market, that's okay. God may be building a spiritual testimony or "bank" that you can make withdrawals from when you sit down to write. This is one of those areas where patience will have its perfect work in you.

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding."
Proverbs 3:5

4 comments:

  1. Jenn,
    This is so true in life and our writing. We have to have faith-and so do our characters.
    And God is willing.
    Jeremiah---"he has plans to prosper, not to harm you"
    not exactly the way it is written, but close. God is willing and wanting good for us.
    But sometimes we can't see it. But He is patient and loving-Praise God.
    Thanks for a very thought-provoking post.

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  2. I am always saying ~ "if the Lord is willing - or Lord willing" ~ I never thought of it that way - why wouldn't he?

    Good post. I think He's really working on you.

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  3. I liked your reference to the "bank." I think I must be wealthy in storing up things like that, lol:-) Ah life.

    Angie

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  4. Great post, Jenn. And so true.

    I've found that the times I'm praying for God's will to be done, it's because I'm thinking that it would take a miracle to make something happen. Otherwise, I'm forthright in my prayers. When I want Him to bring my kids home safely, I don't say "if it's your will!" No! I pray, please bring them home, and then I believe it's going to happen. :)

    So next time I find myself saying "if it's your will", then I'm going to examine it and see why I'm saying that. I want to pray in total faith!

    Missy

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