In this second article of the series focused on the value of trust for all relationships, the emphasis is on God Almighty the Source of trust. Without trust all human relationships and interactions are seriously marred. It is therefore vital that all human beings covet, cultivate and promote the virtue of trust. The premise of this article is that God Almighty is always trustworthy and demands trust from his children. How then is God always faithful or trustworthy? What does the Bible say about God in relation to trust? Let us examine below. The introductory article on the context and definitions of key terms of the series observed the following:
Common observation and experience teach most of us the vital lesson that trust is significant for all interpersonal relationships and yet it is a rare commodity in most societies of today. The root cause of most our family, communal and societal problems is the lack of trust among human beings and their institutions. Conversely the concept and virtue of trust is a necessary ingredient for building and advancing healthy and dynamic relationships of all sorts. It is therefore, very import, in my view, for us to give some serious thought to the need for enhancing genuine trust among ourselves. What then is trust?
The word trust has all kinds of meanings in different contexts. To trust is to have confidence, to rely on, to be assured of, to have hope that what is promised or expected will be delivered. Some of the synonyms of the noun trust are belief, confidence, assurance, hope, faith, reliance, responsibility for, dependence upon, and support. When one trusts someone or something it means one relies, depends and counts on to do or deliver what is promised or expected.
Some of the qualities of trust are fairness, honesty, dutifulness, dedication and devotion, obedience, and faithfulness. In biblical context trust can be synonymous to belief or faith. In this sense to have trust or faith in God goes beyond believing that someone or something is true and can do what he/she/it says. It involves acceptance and surrender. Hence to have faith or trust in God means one comes to a point of complete surrender to the demands of the object of the trust, God.
Trust in the biblical sense of the word involves belief, emotions, intellect, will, and well considered actions. It entails the whole of the person who trusts or believes and leads to a serious change that requires turning away from certain things, persons and influences to a Person and his will and dictates. It demands reorientation from certain habits, attitudes and mindsets to completely different mindset, attitudes and habits.
If each one of us is to be better and do better in life we ought to examine our lives with regards to whom to trust, how to be and remain trustworthy, and how we can inculcate the virtue of trust of the right kind among those we have any influence over.
The overwhelming witness of the whole Bible is that God is always faithful and trustworthy. The writer of Numbers puts it like this: “God is not man that he should lie, not a human being, that he should change his mind, does he speak and then not act, does he promise and not fulfill” (Numbers 23:19)? From human perspective and experience God may appear to fail, delay and let us down from time to time but no, he does not. He does what is ultimately in our best interest. We, humans, often view things from immediate, ulterior motive and selfish perspective but God looks at the over picture and our ultimate best interest. All of Scripture testifies that he never fails and never lies. He is always faithful and sure.
Then he requires his servants to be faithful or trust worthy. The Apostle Paul admonishes fellow believers, “Now it is required that those who have given a trust must prove faithful” (1 Corinthians 4:2). God is not necessarily requiring success in terms of how the world defines success but that those who have been given tasks try their best to be faithful or trustworthy. The Lord will reward their trustworthiness.
In the Old Testament the writer of Proverbs urges: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3:5-6). The prophet is encouraging believers not to confide in their own strength and wisdom alone but learn to put their trust in the Lord and look up to him for guidance. The prophet is not by any means saying that we should trust God and sit and do nothing; rather we think hard, plan well and strive hard to achieve our goals and tasks in dependence upon God, assured, that he is with us, guiding, enabling and providing through our feeble efforts. Divine and human sincere efforts are a marvelous combination and do work wonders!