Trust: Both Necessary and Difficult

The Eighth Commandment is “You Shall Not Bear False Witness Against Your Neighbor.” How is society to function if we cannot trust others to tell the truth? Likewise, we need to be able to trust others not to steal, commit adultery, or covet what is ours.

Each of us likely know some people we trust without thinking about it. While not always the case, hopefully we have family, friends, co-workers, and fellow parishioners we trust.

Do we trust individuals to do their part? It might be as simple as counting on someone to take out the trash. At work, we often need to trust someone else to do their part so that we can do our part. With the Coronavirus we trust others to make wise choices regarding face masks and social distancing to mitigate the spread of the virus.

We should also be able to trust government leaders to tell the truth and make good choices. We count on police and legislatures to develop new policies against racism. We count on the government to help us deal with the Coronavirus.

Sometimes, we are let down. We find at times both individuals and government aren’t always trustworthy. Unfortunately, the church as a human institution also sometimes makes bad choices like with how the sexual abuse scandal was handled in the past.

Is there anyone we can trust?

We can trust God.

Is it always easy to trust God? No. I offer two reasons for this. The first is based on how much others have broken trust with us. (We should include in this the fact that we may remember times when we have broken the trust of others). If we have a history of not being able to trust other people, we might project that onto God. We are created in the image of God. We tend to project our ways onto God. We should not for as we read in Isaiah 55:8, the Lord says, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways.” God’s way is the way of truth. We can trust God.

The second reason we might find it hard to trust God is because we don’t get what we want when we want it.

Do you really think you should get everything you want? Yes, Jesus tells us to ask and we will receive but do we really expect God to give us something that is not good for us? We might ask for it thinking it is good when it is not. In Luke 11:9-13, Jesus speaks of asking for an egg, only to discover it is a scorpion. (Scholars say there was a scorpion then that could curl into a ball, thus looking like an egg. Looks can be deceiving).

How about when we want it? We live in a world that expects instant gratification. We want results now. Promises for tomorrow don’t mean much today (especially from anyone who has broken our trust before).

Sometimes, now is not the time. Remember God sees everything. Sometimes something else needs to happen first. Maybe God is waiting for us to do something first.

Trusting can be hard. Jesus knows this. I point to his agony in the garden (Matthew 26:36-46). He knew God’s plan for his Crucifixion. Jesus did not want to be crucified. Jesus prayed three times, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me; yet, not as I will, but as you will” (Matthew 26:39). Jesus surrendered to the Father’s Will at the appointed time. Good things came, our salvation, when Jesus surrendered to the Father’s Will. Good things will come when we surrender to the Father’s Will.

We need to patient.

What do we need to do to persevere? Prayer is essential. God is everywhere. So we can pray anywhere but sometimes we are more aware of God’s presence in certain settings. Jesus often went out alone to pray.  

Here I suggest Eucharistic Adoration. We know that Jesus is present in the Blessed Sacrament. It started as bread but as Jesus’ command, the bread is transubstantiated into the Body of Christ. When we pray before the Blessed Sacrament, we know that Jesus is there. Here I provide this link to a homily I offered once on adoration and finding Jesus.

We need patience. We need to trust God. I end with the words on every Divine Mercy image, “Jesus, I trust in You.


Fr. Jeff

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