Trust can be a terrifying idea. To put your life, your heart, your future, your finances in the hands of another can leave you feeling vulnerable and exposed. To illustrate, let me share the story of Charles Blondin. He was a world-renowned tight rope walker in the mid to late 1800’s.
(While I’m not sure I’d ever trust a grown man in a ‘onesie’) One person put his life in Blondin’s hands and stands out as a shining example of how we are to trust God. On June 30, 1859, Charles Blondin set up a tightrope 1,100 ft. across Niagara Falls. He’d casually walk back and forth, astonishing the crowd. Being the consummate showman, he’d up the degree of difficulty each time he crossed: walking blindfolded, walking on stilts, walking a wheelbarrow across the falls, and at one point cooking an omelette and eating it while dangling 160 ft. above the Falls!
Blondin then began to work the amazed crowd asking, “How many believe I could carry a man on my shoulders across the Falls?!” The response was unanimous: ”We believe! We believe!” Blondin quickly pointed to one enthusiastic man in the audience, “You sir, get on my shoulders!” One by one the enthusiastic crowd declined his offer to climb aboard. This story resonates with me in my walk with God. At times, I trust Him in my head but not my heart.
Proverbs 3:5: “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding”(NIV)
If I’m honest, I’m a bit of a control freak. Faith or trust demands us to ‘believe it’ and then we’ll ‘see it’. I much prefer to see it first and then I’ll believe it. Anyone else? For those of us wanting to grow in our trust in God, here are a few practical things we can do:
1) Grow in your knowledge of the character and nature of God. That is just a disguised way of saying ‘Read your Bible!’. As you read, consider the “Goodness” and “God-ness” of God. My faith grows as I begin to see both His ability and willingness to do what He said He will do
2) Fill your life with ‘crazy faith’ people. All the research in the world tells us we are influenced by what surrounds us. We tend to only consider how this impacts us negatively. It works in the positive as well. I want to surround myself with people of BIG FAITH. Their influence tends to get on me and my faith grows.
3) Take daily “baby steps” of faith. The only way to trust…is to trust! What are some small steps of faith you can take? When a child learns to walk, we celebrate the steps taken and not the falls. When we begin to have faith, God celebrates our little steps and we grow in confidence until we are not only walking by faith – BUT RUNNING!
By the way, one guy took Charles Blondin up on his offer to be carried across the Falls, his manager Harry Colcord… CRAZY FAITH!