I remember vividly as a child, my parents were out of town and I had to stay in my brothers room, as my oldest sister was watching us. I am not sure how old I was, but I remember seeing a monster by the door. I remember how my breathing changed and I was afraid to move. I am not sure how long I laid there afraid, but at some point I cried out to my sister. She came in the room and turned on the light...that light instantly wiped away the monster. The monster was a chair with a shirt on it by the door. It took just a little courage to call out to her and a ray of light to show me the monster wasn't real.
There are so many monsters in the world today, from the little ones under the bed, to the horrible leaders of ISIS and much worse. There are mentally ill people that for no reason other than lack of mental health care and radical followers of ISIS and other terrorist organizations that kill innocent people for no reason at all.
My monster has followed me for many years. I don't remember a time in my life when I wasn't aware of this monster in my heart and in my mind. It was no longer the chair in the corner or any person that treated me poorly, it was a word. A word that SJ asked me to define a few months ago, a word I had no idea how to use, or how to acknowledge. I was so afraid of this word that I would not let it cross my lips.
Up to that point I had felt a strong pull to a verse, even went as far as to call in my "life verse" but once he asked me the question I felt like a fraud.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him and he will make your paths straight.
Do you see the word? Trust! That is my monster, that is the thorn in my flesh. Paul had a thorn that was never explained. As I have studied this and heard speculation I don't know what it is but I bet his thorn was a lot like my monster.
2 Corinthians 12:8 Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.
SJ had been sending me home with questions, many I won't mention but one week was;
"Who has God put in your life along your path to walk with you and keep you safe?" That was a pretty easy one, I have had some amazing teachers, friends, and family members that loved me even when I didn't love myself. They walked beside me in silence even when I thought I was all alone, they prayed for me even when I didn't think I needed/deserved prayer. I had over a page of names, God had really blessed me before I even accepted him as my Savior. He knew that each of the people would continue to plant truth in my heart. Some would be just the quick smile from a stranger, and some are and continue to be longer than forever friends.
The next week he struck a cord. After many sessions he could see me like only a child of God could see another child's heart. He told me once that the Jesus in him saw the Jesus in me, kind of weird to me to be honest, but WOW. So not only could he see the light in me, he could see the monster. He was led to ask me a question that I would not have wanted to come from anyone else. (I am not kidding there have been many questions that I know SJ was relaying straight from God)
He asked me "What has God done in your life to show he is trustworthy?"
That sure seems like an easy question, He gave his only Son, he died on the cross, he forgives me, listens to my prayers ... the list could go on but the monster is there, Trust. I was at a loss for answers and words (shocking I know), I had nothing to even start with.
So step one in my trying to understand was to find the definition...off to Google, Mister Webster would know!
Noun"belief that someone or something is reliable, good, honest, effective, etc
1)a: assured reliance on the character, ability, strength and truth of someone in which confidence is placed.
This next use of the word was the kicker that explained a lot about this monster to me:
=Social Context: A situation characterized by One Party (trustor) is willing to rely on the actions of another party (trustee) on a situation directed towards the future. The trustor abandons control over the actions performed by the trustee!
OK not in my comfort zone! I could, and would, always take care of myself. If someone drops the ball I will pick it up. If someone doesn't do there job to my standards, I will just do it for them, (my prideful nature = so it gets done correctly). In my past if a date wanted to open a door for me I would slip ahead, as I am fully capable of opening a door! I really don't even like to ride in cars with others because I don't trust them, it makes my blood pressure rise just thinking of giving them the wheel.
I am a caregiver, I love to give presents and love to those in need...but I am so uncomfortable if someone wants to do that for me. If I give them my heart that means I have to trust them with it. I have to trust them not to walk away, think of me as weak, or the worst of all die. I have to take care of me because in the end I felt I would be alone (yes too many deaths to count = serious survival preparation).
What I see most in these last two paragraphs is a person that does not trust anyone, and sadly has herself on a pedestal of perfection. A person that believes that she is the reason people are happy, sad, or taken care of. A child of God that does not even trust her own Father to take care of others as she does. A sinful person, that is unable to believe the truth.
I have read through the Bible a few times, started to memorize verses, and believe me I have seen "Trust in the Lord" many time in many places....I want to Trust, I pray for that monster to leave, I pray that the day will come when I can completely trust people with my heart (a big reason I have never had a true relationship). I know in my heart I will never trust anyone until I can hand that monster to God completely, and TRUST God with every part of my being.
Full disclosure, I have come a long way in the last two years (and even since just looking up the word Trust). When I drive in bad weather I hand it to God, when I am watching a friend hurt I hand it to God, when I watched the election process believe me I handed it to God. It is getting easier to hand him the majority of my anxieties over outside factors, but to hand him my heart 100% is still a Monster that loves to put me in the dark. (Triggers are real, but I am identifying them also)
I am going to continue to study the word, repeat the verses (over and over in my head, a little obsessively), pray scripture over my heart. I AM going to continue to turn HIS Light On, and know deep in my heart that He loves me so much that he is going to continue to shine on this monster. Slowly I put TRUST on my heart (and in every prayer), I am going to let God continue to flip on the light switch when the monster tries to take a seat in the corner.
"It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in humans." NIV
"Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord who does not look to the proud, to those who turn aside to false gods," NIV
"You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord, the Lord himself is the Rock eternal." NIV
"'But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him.'"
"'Do not let your hearts be troubled. You have put your trust in God, put your trust in Me also'" NLV