You can never know. Be immediately suspicious of anyone who tells you otherwise. You can be pretty sure. You can be confident. You can be sure enough to move. But, you can never be absolutely certain. About anything. Ever. You can never know.
So when you need to make a decision, you need something besides certainty. You need something that will make up the difference between what is and what might be. You need to have something that you can trust.
Merriam-Webster defines "trust" as - belief that someone or something is reliable, good, honest, effective, etc.
So you're always putting faith in someone or something else, feeling assured that one or more of these qualities - reliability, goodness, honesty, effectiveness, etc. - are present.
Placing trust in a thing requires physical evidence - I've sat in that particular chair or one just like it; so I can trust that chair, and I will put all my weight on it, being confident that it will hold me and not break and not cause me injury.
However, I'm sure we've all sat in a chair that broke, or know someone else who has.
Placing trust in a person requires relational evidence - I have taken that person's advice or followed that person into a difficult situation, and they stood behind their words, they did what they said they'd do, and the results were, more or less, what they insisted they'd be; so I will follow them again, trusting that the same will be true this time, as well.
However, I'm sure we have all placed our trust in people who've been trustworthy, and they've let us down.
Trust is hard and risky and dangerous. It just is. But, without trust, we can't do anything; we'd never get out of bed. Without trust, we can't interact with anyone; we'd never say anything. To anyone.
Trust is the engine for everything that's worth doing, and it's the bedrock of faith. When Jesus says, "I will never leave you or forsake you," or, "I will give you rest," or, "I'm preparing a place for you," or, "I will be with you," you can never know for sure that it's true; but you can be confident, you can be sure enough to move, you can trust.
Certainty is a vapor, blown away by a gentle breeze, but hope, trust, love - these are eternal.
Join us Sunday as we wrap up our series on trust with the story of Jesus calling the apostles to follow him. We'll be meeting at Blackhawk Middle School, 253 S. Church Rd., Bensenville, at 10:00 a.m. sharp. Come early for coffee, snacks and conversation. Follow the sign.
See you soon!
Message title: “What’s Next?” (disciples)
Main Scripture passages: Luke 5:1-11, Matthew 4:21-22
Questions/thoughts for group discussion or personal reflection:
When have you trusted and been betrayed?
When have you trusted and been blessed?
How does trust differ from something like Pascal’s Wager (google it)?
What are some of the downsides of trusting? Not trusting?