Do You Trust My Love?
Recently I took eleven kids to the movie theater, only three of them were my own. Crazy, I know. (I even considered taking a picture and entering it into LIBERATE’s recent #PicofGrace contest!) When we found our seats, I told the kids that I was going to get popcorn. One child asked me in a panicked voice, “What about me? Will I get popcorn?” I took his small hands and asked, “Do you think I love you?” A slight nod expressed his agreement. Then I said, “Why would I get popcorn for everybody else and not for you? I love you and I want to take care of you. Trust my love for you.” A couple blinks from that concerned little face either meant he thought I was crazy or he understood, although I was not sure which. So I walked away and came back with popcorn and I was the hero, especially for that worried child—a giant bag of buttered popcorn can win you all kinds of love from kids.
During the movie I thought about the exchange we had. I thought about the question I asked. My love for this child is flawed to say the least. I don’t always act out of love and I don’t completely deserve trust, and yet I asked him to trust me. I contemplated my sweet Savior for a minute. I thought of the love he has for me. The love that promises “Never to leave me or forsake me.” A Heavenly Father that is aware of all of my needs, from food to clothing to the righteousness of Another. In Matthew 6 my Father asks me to trust his love for me. This is not a conditional contract, it is a promise. He will care for his kids. He asks me to trust the grace that he has extended over and over again. His asks me to remember how he cares for lilies and birds and how he has taken care of my greatest need. This certainly must build my trust in his love. So when he tells me not to be anxious I can hear my own voice reminding this child of my love. What is amazing is that even when I mistrust God, or question whether I will really be taken care of, or when I look for ways to put my needs first and take care of myself, he continues to show grace. I still have the righteousness of Christ who trusted his Father unwaveringly. He trusted through every temptation; through every trial; through every mundane moment of his life; through every miracle he performed; through the ridiculous joke of a trial he endured; through the betrayal of friends; through being sinned against in the most gruesome ways. He trusted his Father. His care for me continues today as he has secured my forgiveness from all sin, given me his righteousness, and has left the Holy Spirit to remind me of these truths.
When you are tempted to worry or to be anxious about the future, listen to your Father’s voice reminding you to trust his love. His is a beautiful love that is patient, kind, doesn’t envy or boast, and isn’t arrogant or rude. It is a love that never insists on its own way and isn’t irritable or resentful—a love that never rejoices at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. His love has borne and continues to bear all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. His love will never end. We can place full confidence that the love of our God is to be leaned into and trusted eternally.
Jessica Thompson is co-author, with Elyse Fitzpatrick, of Give them Grace: Dazzling Your Kids with the Love of Jesus (Crossway, 2011). Watch her presentation with Elyse at LIBERATE2012 here.