Trusting in God

sky-logo-low-res-transparent.png            Everything is possible with God. Now this doesn’t mean I can fly without a plane, or jump over buildings, or turn invisible, but it DOES mean that I can trust God unconditionally. It means that when you’re sure you’re about to be down and out, God will take care of you. It means that if you’re lonely, God will send you comfort, maybe in unlikely places.

            This week was Sky VBS. I had a wonderful time; it went by far too fast. Being the Youth and Family Ministry Director I feel that I’m sending God’s message, preaching, to other people, and sometimes I forget that it’s mean just as much for me as well. This VBS was especially full of God’s word to me. Each day we had a phrase that was the theme for the day, it tied in with our story, our science project, and every other part of the day. Let me share them with you.


No matter who you are, trust God.

            This day’s “Bible Buddy” was a funky looking bat. We talked about how no matter if you look different than other people, don’t always fit in, or maybe have some quirks, you can trust God, and He will always love you. I think this day’s message fit especially well with Sara’s sermon for this week. She’s been helping us focus on community, on being a family that loves each other. In her sermon she spoke about how we often claim to love God and follow His message, yet there’s still segregation, an “in” and an “out” crowd.

           I gotta tell ya, it’s true. The last church I worked at a mother came up to me and made sure to tell me that she wasn’t sure if she wanted her kid around me because I had tattoos, piercings, and dreadlocks. I’d never met this woman before, and the first thing she said to me, the Family Life Intern, was that she wasn’t sure she trusted me around her daughter. Now, if I had exhibited a pattern of being a bad influence, or pressured the kids to look like myself, or even being bad at my job, she would have been validated in saying this to me. However, this was the first thing she said to me, the first time we met. I was able to assure her that I wouldn’t “turn her daughter to the dark side,” if you will. But the fact is she judged me instantly on how I looked and nothing else. I was not part of her view of what a “good Christian” is.

           Sometimes I am very aware that I am different, but I’m not going to change who I am because some people don’t understand it, or me. God made me with my likes and dislikes, with my penchant towards the alternative, for a reason. God made me, and He loves me, and sometimes other people, other Christians, will judge me for how I look, but I know that I can trust God. After all, He led me to Trinity, where I’ve never had to worry about people judging me for looking a little different.

“People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7


No matter how you feel, trust God.

            Sometimes I can’t feel God’s presence, sometimes I have no idea what I’m doing or where I’m going. Sometimes I get angry at God, or resentful, sometimes I’m lonely and sad. I think we all feel these at one point or another. If you didn’t know, life isn’t easy. There are scary moments, and moments filled with pure joy.

            Back in January my husband and I’s apartment was broken into, and today, about seven months later, I’m still afraid to go to sleep at night. Some nights I can’t, and I lay awake fearing every sound I hear or imagine. It’s nice to remember that no matter how afraid I am, or irrational I’m being, God is there. I can trust Him. He’s going to take care of me. In January we instantly had help from all over, and some of our things were replaces pretty quickly. We got a new apartment, and our cats were safe. God took care of us.

“Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God.” John 14:1


No matter what people do, trust God.

            People can do bad things to you. They can break into your apartment, spread rumors about you, make you cry, and all sorts of things. Sometimes people can be cruel. Has anyone else heard of the big Oreo fiasco this week?

            On June 25th Oreo posted a picture on their Facebook page of an Oreo stuffed with cream, each section a color of the rainbow, and in text at the bottom it celebrated Gay Pride day. I bet you know what I’m going to say next. In the comments section of this picture, a debate exploded. Last I looked there were almost 90k comments. The bulk of these comments were from Christians claiming that all of the gay community will go to hell, there were threats, derogatory comments, and some of the worst things I’ve ever read. I kid you not, there were Christians naming off the ways they’d like to kill and torture gay people.

            People can do and say cruel things, but God is love. I trust God, and I trust that His word is true, and His word is about love, and acceptance, and forgiveness. It’s not hate and intolerance, people might preach hate and intolerance, might treat others, or you, terrible, but you can trust that God is love, and He will take care of you through whatever someone might do to you.

“But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles.” Isaiah 40:31


No matter what happens, trust God.

            Caterpillars are wonderful creatures. At VBS this day we talked a bit about caterpillars, we played games pretending to be caterpillars, too. We talked about how caterpillars go into their dark, secluded cocoon, and when they came out again, they were beautiful butterflies. It reminded me of this quote, “Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly…” My mom has a magnet with that on it.

            Life isn’t always clear. When Riq and I got married we had no idea what the new few years would look like. I felt like I was staring into darkness, no idea what was on the other side. So many things we though we could depend on fell out from under us, and we didn’t know where we were going or what to do for awhile, but God was there with us, and He was waiting there for us on the other side. We might not have been able to see more than a few inches ahead of us, but God has our whole story laid out in front of Him, and He knows the way.

            You might not know what’s on the other side of your cocoon, but God does, and He might well be turning you into a beautiful butterfly through it all.

“I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love.” Romans 8:38 


No matter where you are, trust God.

            We had a flying squirrel as our mascot for this day. We talked about how God put squirrels all over, and when we see a squirrel, we can be reminded that God is with us wherever we go.

            It reminded me of my honeymoon. The day after we got married Riq and I embarked on a week and a half long road trip out to Portland, OR. We had loose directions form MapQuest, and we took off across the country. It was the best time of my life.

            I wasn’t to share three memories with you.

            The first was in Denver, CO. This was one of our decided pit stops even though it was out of the way. We went to a mall I remembered going to when I was kid, out visiting my sister and her kids. The Cherry Creek mall, I believe. None of this matters except to tell you that in the stairwell of the parking structure I found an albino praying mantis. It was one of the coolest bugs I’d ever seen. Maybe only the third mantis I’d come across in my life, and I’ve always liked them. I was floored by the beautiful creature.

            The second was waking up in the car in the dead of night while Riq drove us through the mountains in Oregon. I woke up to pitch black, looked over and out Riq’s window I saw some sort of factory perched on the edge of a cliff. It had glittering lights that silhouetted the trees surrounding the building, and then the light was swallowed by the blackness off the edge of the cliff.

            The third was the day we started home, and I desperately wanted to drive around and see Mt. Hood, but it was out of our way. Riq agreed anyway and we thought we find a highway on the other side. Well, Mt. Hood was beautiful, we got to drive right up around it, but on the other side we were planted into a large expanse of field, and couldn’t find a high way. We decided to keep going, even without directions or any sense of where we were headed. It was terrifying and peaceful at the same time. As we drove and the sun set, a deep red blaze went across the sky, and as the sky went black, we saw the deepest most vivid streaks of red in the sky.

            God was there, and we found our way home easily even though we went off the path. God was with us, and He was waiting for us on the other side.

Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:19


What’d you learn at Sky VBS? Or if you weren’t able to join us, did God teach you something this week? He was certainly at work teaching me.

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