…trust and obey, for there is no other way…

This last 18 months have been a “field trip” for me. I’ve been a Believer for over 30 years and apparently I had not learned the lesson of “trust and obey” in the classroom. I learned all the verses of that old hymn in VBS and can still sing (though not on key) the entire song. Somehow, the idea of trusting and obeying God unconditionally was only an idea in my mind, not a choice of my heart.


So, gently, graciously and with lots of love God took me on a field trip to an emergency room in the middle of the night on my wedding anniversary with my beloved. The outcome was fear, uncertainty and doubt. My greatest fear had been losing my best-friend. That fear became a potential reality when he was diagnosed with an ascending aortic aneurysm. At 4:30 in the morning I followed an ambulance to the nearest hospital with a heart center. Tears streamed down my face as I said over and over, “God, do you realize my heart is in that ambulance?” I honestly felt Him holding my right hand through the 40 minute drive. What I didn’t realize then was that the hard part was yet to come. Learning to live daily knowing this anomaly exists in my husband’s body was the greater lesson of “trust and obey”.

As I said, He is gentle, He is gracious and He is loving. Not only has He been with me every step of this journey, He has graciously given me glimpses of other’s journeys. I’ve watched my friend, Donna, struggle in a marriage to an unfaithful unbeliever. I’ve gotten glimpses of my sister’s life as a foster parent who has no control over when their foster baby with be with them and when he will be plucked from their hands and returned to the very environment deemed unsafe. I’ve prayed with my cousin as she walks a journey that no mother’s heart should have to go; a journey of a perpetrator brother victimizing his two younger brothers in unspeakable acts. I’ve been privileged to witness a young girl rise above the ashes of molestation to become a beautiful young woman of God who is seeking to use her experiences to help other children of sexual crimes.

In these glimpses of lives close to me, I have seen that though this world is evil, God is bigger. He is in control and He loves unconditionally. He is a God who takes our fears and failures and can turn them into a powerful testimony of His love. There is nothing… Nothing…. NOTHING that is beyond Him. In that very thought, I find peace.

Peace, for me, comes in trusting Him and obeying without knowing what my next step will be. There is freedom for my heart when I relinquish my fears and my desires to control everything and allow Him to be the one who holds the reigns of my life. Contrary to what my selfish heart tells me, there is also freedom in obedience. When I say “Yes, LORD!”, I have the freedom to be His vessel without being hindered by my own sins.

All of this sounds great, huh? Guess what? The lesson continues. I know that I will not reach this until the day that I see Him face to face. I’m so thankful that He is willing to keep teaching me. So, today, my heart continues the song that I learned over 30 years ago…

When we walk with the Lord
in the light of his word,
what a glory he sheds on our way!
While we do his good will,
he abides with us still,
and with all who will trust and obey.

Trust and obey, for there is no other way
to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey!

Not a burden we bear,
not a sorrow we share,
but our toil he doth richly repay;
not a frown or a cross,
but is blest if we trust and obey.

Trust and obey, for there is no other way
to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.

But we never can prove
the delights of his love
until all on the altar we lay;
for the favor he shows,
for the joy he bestows,
are for them who will trust and obey.

Trust and obey, for there is no other way
to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.

Then in fellowship sweet
we will sit at his feet,
or we’ll walk by his side in the way;
what he says we will do,
where he sends we will go;
never fear, only trust and obey.

  


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