A creek running over rocks with ice on the sides and a reflection of trees on part of the water; the ice is a reminder that there are times when trusting God is hard

By @JeanneTakenaka

Recently, some significant things happened in our family’s lives . . . things that challenge me to consider how well I live when trusting God is hard. I’ll just say this: the water heater breaking on a Sunday morning was the easiest of those situations. We’ve had issues arise with one of the boys and health concerns in our immediate family, as well as in extended family.

I don’t share this to gain pity. I suspect each of us has walked (or limped) through seasons when the hard keeps piling onto our stooped shoulders. Heartache, scary situations, physical issues (hello, water heater). 

Ice breaking up on a section of a river

Walking through my current difficult season has revealed some heart-trends. When the water begins to boil in our hearts, whatever’s inside bubbles to the surface.

Trust: 5 Heart Changes for When Trusting God is Hard—When the water begins to boil in our hearts, whatever’s inside bubbles to the surface #tellhisstory #trustinggod Click To Tweet

As our present circumstances have upped the heat on my heart, some of what has surfaced is UG-LY. Two of my biggest “uglies” have been a lack of prayer and a lack of trusting God. At times, I become discouraged in my prayer life because I don’t see God answering. 

A brown leaf and stem with hoarfrost on it. Sometimes our hearts are brittle  when trusting God is hard.

I have trouble trusting God because, if He allows things to go differently than I hope, every aspect of my life will be impacted. Maybe this is what leads to the fear and lack of trust: I assume the impact will be negative.

Trust: 5 Heart Changes for When Trusting God is Hard—Maybe this is what leads to the fear and lack of trust: I assume the impact will be negative. #tellhisstory #trustinggod Click To Tweet

Do you see the pattern here? When I hold onto things in my heart, especially inaccurate beliefs or expectations, it’s difficult to trust God.

A creek with ice and water running between woodsy banks

Things We Must Do When Trusting God is Hard

  • Confront wrong beliefs we’re holding to. Like my excuses for not praying and my disappointment in God for not showing up in ways I expected, you may be clinging to some misconceptions. Inaccurate thoughts make it hard to trust God when painful times come. We must confess these things to our Father before we’ll be able to truly trust Him.
  • Remember God’s character. Even when trusting God is hard, He still loves us. He is faithful. He is always present. What are you struggling with about God’s character? Search the Bible for passages and verses that remind you of truths about His character. Write them down so you remember them when doubt creeps into your thoughts.
  • Find Bible verses that comfort and remind you God is always present. With some of the health concerns we’re facing, verses like Isaiah 41:10 and Psalm 84:5-7 offer comfort. They refresh and strengthen me to continue forward.
  • Fend off fear. Especially when we’re afraid of losing something or someone we love, fear can grip us and distort our perspective. We must fight fear with God’s truth and by remembering who He is.
  • Bring concerns to the Lord and hold them with an open hand. The Lord may not address these heart concerns in the way you want. But when you trust God to be faithful to see you through whatever the future holds there’s a place to rest.
Meme that says, "We must fight fear with God's true and by remembering who He is." on a backdrop of hoarfrost-covered pine needles

What Happens When We Deal With Our Hearts

When God revealed my hardened heart, I knew I had to take steps to come back into deeper relationship with Him. I spent a morning journaling, confessing my unbelief and my hard heart, and praying.

And something happened. As I came clean before Him, 

. . . and I asked Him to renew my heart and my spirit, 

. . . as I poured out my hurt and disappointments over all the uncertainties that fill my days right now, 

I began to feel His peace.

A semi-frozen river running between bare tree-lined banks

Somewhere in recent months, I’ve struggled to remember why it’s important. Prayer is talking with God. So, I’m starting there, and I’m rediscovering the simplicity of this. I’ve been journaling my prayers. I am studying prayer to better understand its importance in my relationship with the Lord.

A creek with some ice and some water with trees on each bank and blue sky above, a reminder that even when trusting God is hard, He still shows up

The issues my family is walking through right now are far from over. I need to be walking tightly with Jesus if I’m going to thrive through it. 

And, I need to trust that God will bring me—and my family—through whatever the future holds.

What about you? What do you do when trusting God is hard? Do you have thoughts to add to my list? 

If you’re interested, I’m sharing a couple of visual memes to download with Isaiah 41:10 and Psalm 84:5-7 to encourage you.

Most weeks, I link up with Grace and TruthAnita Ojeda, #Instaencouragements, and sometimes Let’s Have Coffee. Come join and read more encouraging posts!

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