When asked the question, “What am I learning?” I did not have to ponder for too long. The past couple of months have been a season where God has been challenging my wife and I in profound ways with the question, “Do you trust Me?”
My wife (Charlene) and I would consider ourselves to be problem solvers. Typically, we are very resourceful and able to adapt on the fly. However, the tendency is to become self-sufficient, relying on our own strength and ingenuity as opposed to God’s sovereign wisdom. This dynamic came to a head this past summer.
We were on a vacation in Africa, having travelled from Zimbabwe into South Africa. Halfway through the trip we were robbed while we were sleeping. All our cash, credit cards, passports, camera equipment, and most of our clothes were gone! As we stood in the living room of our condo in shock, our minds started to race. How were we going to solve our problem? How do we get out of the country? Where do we stay? How do we eat? All these were important questions, requiring solutions.
At one point, while walking through a local South African mall, trying to convince a storeowner to give us “free” passport photos, God spoke. “Dwayne, will you trust Me or will you try and solve this on your own?” In the middle of an unfamiliar mall, in the midst of a crisis, we stopped and prayed…Jesus, we trust You! Our anxiety dissipated. Our ability to think and process critically improved as we leaned into Jesus.
Throughout the next week, we saw God act in powerful ways. Deadlines that should not have been possible were met. Strangers were assisting us. Time and time again, God proved Himself faithful. Yet my tendency was to try and solve things myself. As soon as I would take my eyes of Jesus, fear would creep in.
Our story is indicative of how many of us, myself included, try and “manage” our lives and our ministries. God asks us to trust Him and yet we quickly try and run ahead of His perfect plans.
As a church staff, we spent time in Psalm 84 this week. The words of the psalmist ring true in my life and ministry. “Lord Almighty, blessed is the one who trusts in You.” (Psalm 84:12).
Trust seems to be the theme for my life and ministry in this season. Over and over again, God is asking, “Dwayne, will you trust Me?” My prayer is that I would learn to lean in more and more to all He has in store for me. That is my prayer for you as well.