In God we trust. This simple phrase blazes it’s message on USA currency yet it seems it is unheard and even less understood. What does it really mean to trust in God?
Do we really know and understand God or are me more absorbed in our own personification of God? Perhaps we see God walking around like George Burns in the movie comedy Oh God! or perhaps a figure reclining in the clouds as seen in the Sistine Chapel. Whatever the perceptions as humans we seem to need something tangible on which to place our trust so these personifications are needed.
Let’s consider the question of, “what does it mean to trust?” I can tell you that I trust you but is it really true? I can recall listening to a sermon by my uncle where he discussed what it means to trust. In that case he demonstrated his trust that a chair would hold him up. He sat first on the chair with his feet on the ground and said that he trust the chair. He then challenged that trust because his feet were on the ground and if the chair were to give away he might still be able to keep himself from falling. Therefore to better demonstrate trust he picked his feet up from the floor, leaning back into the chair and proclaiming this was complete trust. Should we trust in God in the same manner? Should we put ourselves completely into his arms, lean back and say “I give myself completely to you?”
As I have said before, I am spiritual. Spirituality is about knowing God. Spirituality is about the development of self in order to be closer to God. So where does trust come to play? To get closer to God should I give myself completely to God and in doing so should I then act in accordance to my perception of how God directs me to act?
The suggestion put forth here is that in order to put yourself in God’s hands with complete trust you need to have a perception of how God will direct your actions. If you have such a perception then you may arguably begin to act in accordance with that perception instead of any specific direction. The perception creates the direction, not God. The words spoken are “In God I Trust,” but the actions are “I Trust In My Perception of How God Wants Me To Act.”
Okay, let’s image that this latter statement is true. If such is the case, from where did the general perception of God come? When I think back on my early years I recall the teachings of church and family that were reinforced by Hollywood. What better teachers could we have than to see God come to life on the “Big Screen?” Whew, hand out some Oscars and repent.
Is this good or bad? If what I see and hear helps me lead a righteous path could it ever be considered wrong? I will consider this last question a moment to see if I can answer it. Do I have enough information to derive the answer or must I just jump to some end conclusion devoid of facts?
What do I know as true? I know there must be balance in the universe. I know that I exist when I am outside my body. I know that we come and we go as this is what I have been told by those that know. I know we were created from love and to love is where we will return. I know that God loves us without conditions. I know that we cannot describe God in terms of our physical body. These are some of the things that I know.
I do not know what is righteous. What is righteous for one can be evil for another. I do not know how to trust. Trust is defined as the firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone or something. I have been cautious with others the majority of my life. I had to discover my reluctance to trust in order to learn how to trust. It is a journey that I am still taking.
I could say that I trust God but that might mean that I would expect God to provide me what I need based on my own assumptions of what is good for me. For example I could say that I trust God to punish those that would bring harm to me but that trust would be misplaced as God does not punish. I could say that I trust God to protect me from harm but that would be based on my physical assumptions of harm rather than the protection given to my true identity. t
So what is it that I can really mean if I say “In God I trust?” If I can accept the definition of trust as ” the firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone or something,” I cannot trust that God will provide me all that I ask or trust that only good things will come my way if I live one way rather than another. However, if such trust means that with God there exist a unique and unchanging truth on which I can rely without exception or condition then, because God’s love is the singular truth that I know; the answer is really simple, “I trust that God will always love me without conditions.”