Consistency & Trust
The more consistent a person’s attitude, actions, and words, the higher level of trust and confidence I have in that relationship. When I know someone will dependably show solid character, my stress level goes down and trust goes up.
For example, I trust my steady husband more than any other person. My oldest son and a couple of my friends tie for second. Whatever these people are involved with in my life holds a great deal less stress because of their consistent character.
Of course, the reverse also holds true. The less consistent character, the lower the trust and the higher the stress. The people in my life fall into various places along the spectrum of decreasing trust and increasing stress because of a lack of consistent dependability.
Of course, all of those relationships involve imperfect people that to some extent are unreliable and inconsistent. With God, though, the picture completely changes because perfection exists in a person that never fails me.
Perfection Changes Everything
“Christ, the same yesterday, today, and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8)
Whenever I understand more about who God is as He reveals Himself through His Holy Spirit — that He is my Lord and my God, that He is Holy and that He is my Savior — my confidence in Him automatically increases.
“I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine. When you go through deep waters and great trouble, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown! When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. For I am the Lord, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.” (Isaiah 43:1-3)
The better I know him and his ways, the more I trust him. Bob Sorge in The Fire of Delayed Answers focuses on this idea in Chapter 14. He expresses the truth this way:
“Confidence happens when we come to understand God and His ways. When we really get to know God, confidence is automatic. If we truly come to know Him, we’ll be confident that He will be true to His person.”
Because God is who he is, I can have perfect confidence in Him. Yet, because I am who I am, I don’t.
Scripture like Isaiah 43:1-3 serve to remind me that my imperfection doesn’t limit him. As Sorge says,
“Confidence says, ‘I know He’s working on my behalf for good.”’
I can know this because he has done it before in my life and in the lives of countless others, and because the Bible assures me that’s who he is. That’s his character.
“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights who does not change like shifting shadows.” (James 1:17)
Confidence through Struggle
Let’s go back to the “fire” and “rivers” in Isaiah 43:1-3 for a minute and apply how understanding and knowing God leads to automatic confidence in Him to work in my — and your — life for good today.
What would you list as your “fire” and “rivers” right now? In other words, what are the main sources of struggle and stress in your life? (Yes, you can name a specific person… I did.)
For each of the “fire” and “rivers” you listed, tell God you trust Him with them. Think of all He’s done for you and of what the Bible says of his ways and who he is, and let this knowledge strengthen your confidence in him to bring you through your current struggles. He did it before, and he’ll do it again because that’s who he is.