Updated: Jan 3
In the book of Jeremiah, The LORD warns us about putting our trust in the fragility of man!
(Jeremiah 17:5-8 ESV) 5 This is what the Lord says: “Cursed are those who put their trust in mere humans, who rely on human strength and turn their hearts away from the Lord. 6 They are like stunted shrubs in the desert, with no hope for the future. They will live in the barren wilderness, in an uninhabited salty land. 7 “But blessed are those who trust in the Lord and have made the Lord their hope and confidence. 8 They are like trees planted along a riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water. Such trees are not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought. Their leaves stay green, and they never stop producing fruit.
Why do we strive so hard to put our trust in people? is there something on the inside of us that pushes us to put our trust in others just like us, close to us, people we feel are trustworthy?
God warns us throughout scripture about putting our trust in mankind because He knows that mankind in itself is fragile in every sense of the word. To be fragile is to be easily broken, bent out of shape, destroyed easily, not sturdy, delicate, vulnerable, or damaged easily. When we think about mankind in this context we are easily bent out of shape, each day are moods shift, are loyalties change, and even the most trustworthy of us can be here (on earth) one moment and gone the next.
The LORD wants us to understand that we must put our trust in the One who is always going to be here, the One who is everlasting, the One who is unchanging, the One who is unwavering, the One who will never leave you nor forsake you, the One who is eternal (who has always lived and will never die).
He tells us we are cursed for putting our trust in someone we know is fallible, someone like us, who will fail us, not always because they intend to but just because we are incapable of fully being there for someone else when we truly cannot even be there for ourselves. No one can give what they do not have.
The warning of a barren wilderness, living in a desolate place with no hope for the future speaks of our continued reliance on shattered mankind. The longer we put our trust and dependence upon mankind the more fractured our foundation and reality become. When we need to finally stand up on the foundation on which we're building when the day of adversity comes we will realize that our foundation was just as fragile as the very thing and or person(s) that we were building it on.
The blessing of trusting in the Lord and putting our hope in confidence in Him is based on God's ability to not fail, not fall short, and be infallible. He has the ability to always be there, to be always strong, always comforting, always just, always righteous, and always for the ones who truly love Him. He has the power to overcome, the power to defeat the giants, the power to climb the mountains and cast them in the sea, and the power to do what is impossible for mankind to do. The very thing that is required from us is that we act on His word, and we put our faith, trust, and belief in Him. This is why God's Word tells us "we are more than conquerors in Christ Jesus." It is in Jesus and through Jesus that we are powerful conquering overcomers, not absent from Him. Absent from Jesus is the picture of the fragility God speaks of in the above scripture in Jeremiah 17:5.
Scripture likens the blessed to trees that are planted along a riverbank with their roots deep into the ground, that will always be nourished, and never have to worry about drought (lack) or becoming scorched by the sun because they are in a protected place, a place in which the Lord makes sure they are taking care of and they will continue to produce fruit in all seasons because the Lord is the One who nourishes them and makes sure they are provided for!
Short Personal Story:
I grew up a daddy's boy, I and my father have always been pretty close and we got a chance to do a lot of things together throughout my lifetime. I was one of those kids whose dad happened to be his best friend, I did not plan on things working out that way, they just did. Also, that does not mean that I and my dad have never had things we didn't have to work through, it simply means that this was my bud, my confidant, my guy that I would walk with, talk with, cry with, and share my heart with. That all changed for me when my dad left this earth on a sunny Friday morning in October of 2017.
My dad was not perfect in any sense of the word but he was perfect for me in so many ways with all of his rough edges and unfinished surfaces. He would remind me often to keep my trust in God and to be careful of putting my trust in others. "People, even with the best of intentions will let you down" he would say. He would remind me of some of his failures with me, he would tell me that he never intended for these failures to take place but that did not stop them from happening. Even when he thought he was doing the best for me, his thinking and actions in some areas were absolutely fallible (wrong). He would tell me that all people, including those that love you will let you down at one time or another even when that wasn't the plan.
We would have conversations about Lord and discuss the perfect nature of God and how He could never fail anyone. In some of the discussions of His nature, we would talk about how He never changes, that His Word is good throughout all time and that it is not fly by night (meaning it changes based on how you feel). How he will always be there, available every moment, every hour, every day, every celebration, every heartbreak, every win, and every loss.
No one else but God could promise that and hold to it, we (mankind) are not made in such a way to fulfill the position which only God can fulfill. When we truly understand this, we will STOP putting other people in a position they were not built for, no matter how much we love them, no matter how close they are to us. The Word of God is trying to teach us to put our trust in what is truly trustworthy. Trust itself must consist of two (2) things to be earned and that is 1) Character: having the mental and moral qualities distinctive to an individual, and 2) Competence having the necessary ability, knowledge, or skill to do something successfully. To trust someone in any area of life both of these attributes must be present for you to trust them. Our Lord is the only one with the ability (competence) and character to guide your life as He will never fail you!
Where does that leave us concerning the people we love and trust here with us? Do we put trust in the ones we need to have trust in such as our spouses, close friends, siblings, parents, etc? Yes, we put our trust in those who have earned it and worked for it. God is NOT saying to not trust people at any level, what He trying to teach us is that 100% reliance on people will be your downfall, people are NOT built for you to build your complete trust on because they can easily fail you, even with the best of intentions. The Word of God teaches us that there is no failure that resides inside of God, He is perfect. He does not have the ability to fail you, to fall short, to not be available, to not give perfect advice, to allow His feeling and emotions to affect His perfect judgment, to be asleep when you call. He is perfect and in His perfection is always working to perfect the ones who love Him and follow Him. He is the Good Father, the one always seeking to restore, perfect, and perfectly love His children. He is all-knowing, always present everywhere, and all-powerful. No person or entity outside of Him possesses these capabilities and that is why our trust must be in Him and not someone who is incapable of His attributes. I learned through my dad, that even when a person truly loves you they still will fall short of perfection concerning you no matter how hard they try. This does not mean that they don't love you because they absolutely do. It is that we should not push on them a responsibility they were never meant or built to handle. God is God for a reason!
This week, take some time to meditate on Jeremiah 17:5-8 and write down where you need to grow and develop in your trust concerning the Lord. Pray, ask for clarity, and strive for a deeper relationship with the Lord!
Take Care Family,
©Copyright Charles R. Myles II 2022