Do we trust God or do we trust things of this world. An interesting question,
while we may answer one way, what do our actions demonstrate.
Being of This World
It is very easy to count on the actions or promises of another person.
After all, we relate to people every day of our lives. We put out trust in
our family members to do what is necessary for the overall well-being
of every person in the family. We trust that people will fulfill their
commitments, for example when they promise that will cook a dessert
for a special occasion, or when they indicate that they will be at a
certain place at a certain time.
However, we also know that there are times, sometimes many times,
when we have been let down by another person that we so much
counted on. In fact, we may also be guilty of the behaviour from time
to time ourselves. But, how do we react to those types of people who
let us down after seemingly making a specific promise that they knew
we depended on being carried out? Should we react in anger? Should
we seek retribution if possible? Should we condemn their actions, or
lack of action in this case, to anyone who will listen?
A Case In Point
Within one of our local cities (there are three cities joined by common roads),
there is a local foodbank that has been in operation for almost thirty years.
However, a recent amalgamation of other local foodbanks into one forced
the foodbank I'm talking about to seek other accommodation that
would place its' location within the boundaries of the city that they
would serve. The search began in earnest with several sites immediately
idenitifed as possible suitable locations, than each one was evaluated,
and ultimately rejected because of the huge rent that was required in
After several more weeks of searching for other suitable and affordable
locations, the food bank manager apparently found a location that would
perfectly meet its needs. It was in a location that was both easily accessible
by car and by bus, had ample parking for both clients and volunteers,
and had a rear entrance that would accommodate deliveries both from
individuals and large organizations. The search committee members
from the food bank met with the owner's son and toured the building.
The building space was large enough to properly serve the client base of the
foodbank and with a few minor alterations would provide sufficient space
for temporary food storage. It seemed the search was over. The son of the
owner was both easy to talk with and excited that the space would provide
for such a fantastic need. When the foodbank manager spoke to the owner
by phone, who was in Florida at the time, prior to their actual visit, seemed
to be supportive of the food bank moving in and even hinted at offering
a reasonable rent.
So, you can imagine the surprise when the son called back a week later
and said his father decided not to rent the space to the food bank.
The son was upset and said he knew that not renting to the foodbank
was discrimination but it was his father's decision and not his.
So, how would you react to being told one thing and then only a short
while later being told the exact opposite?
Or, what would you do when you were told by the son that the fact the
rental was denied to the foodbank was actually recognized as being
discriminatory? Would you be angry? Would you be so angry that you'd
make sure that as many people as possible were told about the situation
citing the owner by name?
Would you call a lawyer and attempt to sue the owner for discrimination?
Would you contact the local newspaper and cry foul?
If you are of this world you could easily have initiated any or all of the above
noted possibilities. In fact, if you are of this world I would be surprised that
you wouldn't start undertaking actions of revenge. But, what does it really
mean to be of this world, and what does it mean about who you really
are and what you believe in?
To be of this world simply means that you believe
that you are and the
way you act is what is expected in our culture. It means that you rely
on "self" as the one who is in control. It means that you have to stand up
for yourself and defend yourself against everyone else who crosses
your path the wrong way. It means that it is survival of the fittest where
the meek get stomped on and the strongest survive. This is the way of
the world if you are of this world.
Not Of This World
If the manager of the food bank was of this world, he would have been upset,
and he could have threatened to sue on the basis of discrimination, or he
could have gone to the newspapers and told his story.
"You used to do these things when your life was still part of this world."
"Don't copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know Godís will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect." Romans 12:2
But, the manager calmly told the son not to worry about it. And the manager
told the volunteers at the food bank that we will trust God
to find us the space.
If the philosophy of the food bank was "of this world" there would have
been anger, there would have been revenge. But by putting their trust in God,
there was peace
and there was hope.
"Don't let your hearts be troubled.
Trust in God, and trust also in me." John 14:1
"Trust in the Lord always, for the Lord God is the eternal Rock."
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own
understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which
path to take."
We should all read the Bible. But there is more to it than just reading.
The Bible's real power comes when we put its' words into action.
And, while you may put His word into action, you should also realize that
some will think you are strange, or odd because you do not conform to the
ways of the world. The whole idea of living the Word of God means you
are operating as if on the other side.
In essence, this means that to those who do not follow Jesus, your behavior
is opposite to the behavior that is expected of you given the current culture
that speaks more of what the "self" wants than of what is the right thing to do.
The behavior of this manager demonstrated the Word of God in our everyday
life; an example of not "being of this world" and, an example of "trusting God."
Here are some other inspiring verses that speak to the issue I have been
"The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it,
but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world,
so it hates you."
"Don't let anyone capture you with empty philosophies and high-sounding
nonsense that come from human thinking and from the spiritual powers
of this world, rather than from Christ."
"Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love
the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you."
1 John 2:15
"Teach those who are rich in this world not to be proud and not to trust in
their money, which is so unreliable. Their trust should be in God, who richly
gives us all we need for our enjoyment."
1 Timothy 6:17
"I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.
Through Christ you have come to trust in God. And you have placed
your faith and hope in God because he raised Christ from the dead and
gave him great glory."