give me faith.

There are some times that I sit down to write a post and all the thoughts I have jumbled up in this brain of mine come out onto the screen in a semi-organized way. I see some form of a bigger picture. When this happens I take a deep breathe, more a sigh of relief I suppose, and file those thoughts as “complete.” They get the desirable status of published, and I move on. To new thoughts. New ideas. New lessons to be learned.

But there are other times that I open up my dashboard and begin to frantically type and yet instead of making me feel a sense of conclusion…my words leave something to be desired. It’s like I’m staring at the pieces and noticing that I still can’t see the whole jigsaw puzzle. Some of the pieces need to be moved around, and others are missing entirely. They leave questions unanswered, lessons unlearned. I, then(with a frustrated grunt), jab the “Save Draft” tab and come to the realization that, upon further review, there is still more to learn. Then again, there is always more to learn, isn’t there?

This is one such post.

I’m not saying that now I have this all figured out, but I’m taking one step forward, whether or not I know where my foot will land.

I love all things Classic Disney.

When I was younger, our entire basement was adorned with Disney posters. I have seen all the movies. I know all the songs. I’m pretty sure if I could replace all the Disney song lyrics I have in my head with…well, anything else, then I would be a much more productive member of society. Growing up, my dad would tell me that he wanted Disney movies for his birthday and Christmas just because he knew I wanted them so badly. One year, I bought him Pocahontas and watched it six times in a row before he even watched it once.

Apart from their brilliant and witty soundtracks and dialogues, I think I learned a lot of life lessons from good ‘ole Walt. Yes, sometimes they set unrealistic expectations, but they also taught me valuable things about courage and love and how wonderful things can come from the most unlikely places…or people. They taught me how to imagine, and how to dream.

One scene that keeps coming into mind lately is from the movie Aladdin–that one right before Aladdin and Jasmine serenade us with “A Whole New World” when he is floating on a magic carpet on her balcony and he asks her simply, “Do you trust me?”

I’ve heard that question over and over again in my head lately.

“Do you trust Me?”

I’ll be honest in saying trust has never been one of my strong suits. I wholeheartedly align myself with the “optimistic cynics” of the world in that I hope for the best and expect the worst. Always. People, after all, are imperfect and will, therefore, eventually let you down, right?

But this concept, this lack of trust, has been drastically detrimental to my relationship with God.

I read scripture like Proverbs 3:5 “Trust in the Lord your God with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, but in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.” And think to myself, “Well, that’s easier said than done.”

Maybe I’m the only one who feels this way, I don’t know. But I don’t think I am.

But trust is fundamental. It always has been. And by damaging that foundation, Satan has been able to spread lies from the beginning. He made us wonder if God really does have a plan in it all.  Made us wonder if God really had our best interest in mind, or if He was withholding blessings from us.

Made us doubt whether or not God is good.

And this still happens to me on a daily basis. Because if we begin to doubt God’s goodness, it is that much easier for Satan to whisper lies into our ears.

he tells me that I am not good enough.

he tells me that I am not wanted.

he tells me that I am not loved.

he tells me that God really doesn’t work for my good.

I’ve been unearthing these lies in my head for years now. They are simple, and yet they have the power to bring me to a place of helplessness, hurt, and apathy.

These lies tell me to try harder, be better, do more.

And yet, above all that I hear the resounding question, “Do you trust Me?”

“Do you trust Me to be your everything? To truly be the air you breathe, your bread of life, your Rock? Do you trust Me not just in the little things, but in all things? Do you know that I am good? Do you know that I am Sovereign? And if so, do you trust me enough to give up your good for my best?”

Give up good for great. Okay for best. Happiness for Joy. Temporary for eternal.

If I could write a thesis statement for what I have learned in the last six months, and am still learning now, it would be just that: Give up my good for His best.

I think, even more dangerous than believing some of the outright lies above, is believing the lukewarm lies. The lies that culture and Christianity can some how be shared half and half in life and it’s okay. That it is possible to live one foot in the world and one foot in Christ.

I looked at the things I was doing and told myself, “It may not be what God’s exact will is, but I’m still doing things for Him. So that’s okay, right?”

I found myself in a place where I was working for Him, instead of with Him. This is the lukewarm lie I talked myself into believing was okay,  all the while wondering where my peace had gone.

I wanted the best of both worlds. It worked for Miley. Why couldn’t it work for me?

But Christ doesn’t call us to this life of halves. He doesn’t desire for His bride to travel daily between the Father and the world. Like a child in a broken family, He doesn’t want us to only see our dad on the weekends, or more often than not, only on Sunday mornings. He desires us to be whole, and calls us to full submission. Every moment of every day. To take our thoughts captive for his glory, to fully die to ourselves, and to trust that what we accomplish through Him is far far greater than our idea of happiness.

To give up our good for His best.

That is a brave concept. It takes a conscious effort on our part, but a strength only fathomable by Him. It takes giving up control, something that I idolize in my life. I let the Lord pry control from my stubborn fingers.

But I think if we had the courage, the passion, the trust to step out and act on such a statement, that our lives, the lives of those around us, and the face of Christianity today would change drastically.

But it all starts with trust that God is who he says He is. That He is sovereign, and that He is good.

“Give me faith to trust what You say

That You’re good and You’re love is great

I’m broken inside, I give You my life.”

“Do you trust me?” He asks.

Give me faith to trust what You say. Give me faith, Lord. Give me faith.

Who knows? Maybe I’ll get to see a whole new world…

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