Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
I don’t know how many times I have heard this verse quoted. In context of people quoting that line, it is usually in conjunction with failing to take action. “God’s got it.” “God only knows.” “His ways are mysterious.” “You never know how God can use that.”
The next time we feel the urge to quote 3:5, let us also include verse 6.
In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
Breaking verse 6 down a little bit here, acknowledge him would be sort of like when your parent is talking to you and says, “Look at me when I’m talking to you.” That is a face to face encounter meant to ensure you got the message. Direct your path comes with the implication that you are going to follow through with the instructions just given. Obedience of faith.
I don’t think I have ever ended a devotional with a “Thus saith the LORD.” I think it sounds pious and insincere, but I feel that the Lord has something He wants me to say to you for Him. So in light of verse 6, I will say what I heard.
“HEY, I’M TALKING TO YOU!”
1 Samuel 30:6 And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.
One thing hasn’t changed since I gave my life to Christ, I am still human, subject to human emotions and frailties. Yes we have help, but we still have problems. We are still subject to moments of doubt and depression. When that happens the answers on how to change the situation are not always clear.
Looking at the scripture above doesn’t really tell us what David did to encourage himself, does it? If I told you that David’s encouragement was to remind himself who he was in the Lord is would not serve you if you do not know who you are in Christ. Even if you do, it still might not help, so let me put an example before you.
Doubt and depression are wells you have dug yourself into and there is no ladder to climb out with. The answer is the solution to a physical problem. How do you get out of a well you have dug by yourself? Widen the hole and walk out. Doubt and depression are self-centered. If you can look beyond yourself and to others, your doubt and depression will no longer be the focus of your attention, you will have stopped digging. Eventually you will be able to walk away from it.
While who you are in Christ might be a little more complicated question, we all share two basic commands. Love God and love one another. Remembering that will help until you can find yourself.