Summary: This message focuses on whether or not we can be trusted by God based on the three primary drivers for building trust: benevolence, ability and integrity.
Can God Trust Me?
The title of my message this morning is “Can God Trust Me?” This is the month we decided to give God our very best and to accomplish this task it requires a lot of trust. Everyone hearing my words today, or who will read them later, has possibly made the decision to accept Christ as their personal Savior. Christian, in general, has made the decision to trust Him! This morning I want to share with you what needs to be in place in order for real trust to be established. As I share the drivers for building trust, I want to contrast our ability to trust God with His ability to trust us. But, before I do that, let me share with you the definition of the word “driver” so that when you hear me use it this morning you understand the context. For the purposes of this message, driver is defined as “something that provides motivation to act.” In other words, it is the strong force that brings about something, e.g. change.
Turn with me to Psalms 62 as this Scripture actually captures the three drivers of building trust. Let’s begin reading at verse eight. It reads, “My soul, wait in silence for God only, for my hope is from Him. He only is my rock and my salvation, my stronghold; I shall not be shaken. On God my salvation and my glory rest; the rock of my strength, my refuge is in God. Trust in Him at all times, O people; Pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us. Selah. Men of low degree are only vanity and men of high degree are a lie; in the balances they go up; they are together lighter than breath. Do not trust in oppression and do not vainly hope in robbery; if riches increase, do not set your heart upon them. Once God has spoken; twice I have heard this: that power belongs to God; and lovingkindness is Yours, O Lord, for You recompense a man according to his work.” (Psalm 62:5-12)
Hidden in these verses we find what is necessary for trust to be established: benevolence, ability and integrity. David encourages the people to put their trust in God at all times without wavering. Why? Because God is a benevolent God who has the ability to do whatever He wills. This is the opposite of men. In verse nine David says that men of low degree cannot be trusted to help. This is because they do not have the ability to help even though they may be willing. He also says that we should not put our trust in rich men (men of high degree.) Although a rich man can help, they promise much but actually do very little. They will cause us to be hopeful but in the end mock us. David said that both were lighter than a vapor for they disappoint men who put their trust in them. He does not stop here; he goes on to say that we should not trust in oppression, robbery or riches. Riches obtain illegally will not help us and God will not look favorably on the oppressors and or the riches obtained through robbery. He finishes by saying we should trust in God at all times and that God will reward everyone according to their work because both power and mercy belong to God.
So what does it really mean to trust someone; to put your trust in someone? Trust is actually one of the essential ingredients in any high-value relationship. Although trust may seem like an abstract quality, it is actually a concrete condition that we can consciously develop through our behavior. Modern dictionaries define trust as a reliance on, or confidence in, one’s strength, integrity and ability. Keep in mind that trust is actually both a noun and a verb. It is something we have and something we do. As a noun, trust refers to a condition that can exist in a relationship between people. As a verb, trust is an act of placing our confidence and reliance in another person. Trust is always absence when we feel suspicious about someone’s integrity, ability, intentions or commitment. Consider the fact you can spend years of earning someone’s trust through many, many examples, and lose it all in one instance where you were found to be untrustworthy. Trust promotes truth so it is impossible to really trust in someone who lies. Maybe this is why the Bible speaks frequently about liars and the impact they have on lives.
If you think about someone that you do not trust chances are your reasons will fall within one of these four areas that I just mentioned. Liars cannot be trusted fully because a person never knows when a lie or a truth is being told. Trust is influenced in relationships by our behaviors; in other words, trust develops or not develops based on how we act. Trust is a subjective condition that is influenced by how we act. Mark Twain said, “Action speaks louder than words but not nearly as often.” Our behavior matters when it comes to people trusting us and proving beyond all doubt if in fact God is able to trust us. Also of note is that the quality of trust in a relationship, at any given point, is in the eye of the beholder. How trustworthy we are is determined by those evaluating us and not by our own personal opinion of ourselves. I can think I am trustworthy because I know my intentions. However, those evaluating me see my actions, not my intentions, and when my intentions and my actions are not in alignment doubt exists about whether or not I can be trusted. Again, trust takes years to build, seconds to break, and forever to repair. When we make a commitment, we build hope. When we keep it, we build trust! One final word on trust before we continue; Warren Buffet said “Trust is like the air we breathe. When it is present, nobody really notices. But when it is absent, everybody notices.” Keep this in mind as you consider if you are trustworthy by men or by God (and just in case you are wondering, if you can’t be trusted by men, you definitely cannot be trusted by God.) So let’s examine the three drivers for building trust. Remember, a driver is a strong force that brings about change.