I’m sure I’ve mentioned it before, but I am an avid journaler. Is there such a word? I haven’t always been, but it’s been my experience that if I don’t write it down, I will forget and then it will be gone with the wind. I journal what I believe the Lord is showing me, revealing to me, or telling me. I can’t tell you the number of times where I thought for sure I was making it up in my head, and then when I go back later, I know it was Him. So this morning, I thought I would be smart. I asked Him the following question: “Lord, if you could answer any question that I could ask, what would your answer be?” I was of course basing this on the realization that I don’t even know what questions to ask Him, He is so far above my understanding. His response was gracious, He always is. He told me it was a good question, since I am finite and He is eternal. But then He pointed something out. He told me that my question was actually based in fear. Yes, the Lord does know my heart! The fear was that I was somehow missing the mark. I was afraid of getting it wrong because I didn’t know the right question to ask. He told me that He is not a formula. If He were, then if I could just get the right combination, the right method if you will, I would then get my answer, or my prayer answered. Think of it as a slot machine. If you do it just right, you hit the jackpot. But our Father is not sitting up in heaven, tapping His foot, waiting for us to get it just right. He knows our finite minds, He knows our limitations. And, our relationship with Him should be based on love and trust, not a formula. This is how He described it to me. Think of it as a child/parent relationship. Children do not understand their world. We, as adults, do not understand ours right now. Paul tells us that now we “know in part” (1 Cor 13:9) and “now we see in a mirror dimly” (1 Cor 13:12). A child trusts the parent to protect them, because they know, or should know, that the parent is safe. They do not understand everything, but they know they can trust their parent. We do not understand everything, and we don’t need to, in order to trust Him. I love to understand. I think we all do. It somehow makes me feel safe, if I can just understand. But my sense of safety should not rest in my understanding, it should rest in Him. Proverbs 3:5 tells us “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding”. There is good reason for this admonition. If we lean on our own understanding of things it will be very easy to become deceived. The enemy loves to deceive us based on our need to understand. Satan will give us “a form of understanding” so that we can trust in it, but that understanding, will not protect us. All it will do is create a false teaching, another form of deception. The Lord took it further for me and showed me why there is so much fear, panic, confusion and hopelessness in the world right now, even among Christians. People do not understand what is happening. They thought they were trusting Him, but their trust was actually in their own understanding of who they thought He was, or what they thought He was. A mental graven image, if you will. I know that sounds harsh. But I think, if we are honest with ourselves, we will realize that we are all tempted by this problem. We want to understand Him who declares to us “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts”. (Isaiah 55:8-9) We all come to times and events in our lives, where we thought we understood Him, but then we didn’t! So what do we do now? Nothing makes sense. It would enrage people if I stated that God allowed this to happen in the world. Yet, He tells us in Proverbs 17:3 “The crucible is for silver, and the furnace for gold, and the Lord tests the hearts”. Do we choose to believe He is good and He is trustworthy or do we become like Job’s wife and curse God? Will we trust Him, when He tests our hearts, will I trust Him as He is testing my heart? I have learned through the trials and tests of my life, that He knows things I don’t. I have learned that if I trust Him, no matter what happens to me or those I love, He will work it out for good. And even better, He will work it out in such a way that I will stand amazed, in awe of His goodness and I will bring glory to His name. He is good. He is trustworthy, even when nothing makes sense.