Thursday, July 16, 2009


About a year after Ethan was hurt, my aunt gave me a book that had been recommended to her by a friend. This friend's son had recently been paralyzed from the neck down in a truck accident. She had been the facilitator for a Bible study my aunts were taking, Believing God by Beth Moore, right before her son's accident.

Needless to say, her recommendation came with lots of credibility.

I have read several books over the last five years.

Actually, I might have read too many books over the last five years!

But, no book has touched me and taught me more than this book.

The name of the book is Ruthless Trust by Brennan Manning.

The sub-title is The Ragamuffin's Path to God.

I qualify as a Ragamuffin.

Written on the back of the book is a simple statement. "Brennan Manning shows us how true and radical trust in God can transform our lives."

Everyday I find that living my life with radical trust really does change my life.

In fact, I'm finding that radical trust is the only way I can live my life.

There is a passage from this book that led me to name this blog, "Forget Not His Benefits." You can read that simple passage here under the subtitle Why the Name.

There is another passage I would like to share with you. I remembered it Monday as I sat in the hospital cafeteria and thought about all the times God had asked me to "Trust Him."

To "Trust Him" when everything I saw told me that I was stupid and naive to trust.

Even now, most everything I see tells me that I'm crazy to trust. Yet, God continuously tells me to, "Trust Him."

The passage from Ruthless Trust:

"When the brilliant ethicist John Kavanaugh went to work for three months at "the house of the dying" in Calcutta, he was seeking a clear answer as to how best to spend the rest of his life. On the first morning there he met Mother Teresa. She asked, "And what can I do for you?" Kavanaugh asked her to pray for him.

"What do you want me to pray for?" she asked. He voiced the request that he had borne thousands of miles from the United States: "Pray that I have clarity."

She said firmly, "No, I will not do that." When he asked her why, she said, "Clarity is the last thing you are clinging to and must let go of." When Kavanaugh commented that she always seemed to have the clarity he longed for, she laughed and said, "I have never had clarity; what I have always had is trust. So I will pray that you trust God."

Then Manning goes on to say:

"Craving clarity, we attempt to eliminate the risk of trusting God. Fear of the unknown path stretching ahead of us destroys childlike trust in the Father's active goodness and unrestricted love.

We often presume that trust will dispel the confusion, eliminate the darkness, vanquish the uncertainty, and redeem the times. But the crowd of witnesses in Hebrews 11 testifies that this is not the case. Our trust does not bring final clarity on this earth. It does not still the chaos or dull the pain or provide a crutch. When all else is unclear, the heart of trust says, as Jesus did on the cross, "Into your hands I commit my spirit" (Luke 23:46)."

Yesterday afternoon a bunch of "what-ifs" about some new uncertainties in our lives got the best of me. After finding myself in a heap of fear and anxiety, I sat at the same kitchen table where I sit this morning typing, and recalled to Jim and mostly to myself, all the times that things seemed impossible. All the times that there appeared to be no way out. All the times where it looked like we were sunk by consequences of poor choices and past sins. I named them one by one.

And with each impossibility, I remembered how the God of the Impossible had been faithful.

I know many of you who read this blog pray for us.

Please pray we trust God.

Please pray that we don't hold on to the desire for clarity.

Please pray that our lives are transformed by a radical trust in God.

A radical trust in the God who has given us permission to call Him, "daddy."

"So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves.
Instead, you received God's spirit when he adopted you as his own children.
Now we call him, "Abba, Father."
For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are his children."
Romans 8:15-16

1 comment:

  1. Somehow or another I missed this blog until tonight. I always ask for clarity to know what on earth I should do about this or that. I need to trust that he will lead me in the way I should go. That his will will be my desire.