by Jerry Bridges
Here are thirty-one devotions to encourage you to trust God in times of difficulty and uncertainty:
“Take care, brother, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God.” Hebrews 3:12 (ESV)
Prayer: In order to trust God, you must always view your adverse circumstances through the eyes of faith, not of sense.
“He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.” Colossians 1:17 (ESV)
Prayer: God did not simply create and then walk away. He constantly sustains that which He created.
“Our God is in the heavens; he does all that he pleases.” Psalm 115:3 (ESV)
Prayer: Confidence in God’s total sovereignty is crucial to your trusting Him.
“In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will.” Ephesians 1:11 (ESV)
Prayer: God will fulfill that personal plan for you.
“I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11 (ESV)
Prayer: Honor God by choosing to trust Him when you don’t understand what He is doing or why He has allowed some adverse circumstances to occur.
“If God is for us, who can be against us?” Romans 8:31 (ESV)
Prayer: God does sovereignly intervene in people’s hearts so that their decisions and actions accomplish His purpose for our lives.
“Though he cause grief, he will have compassion according to the abundance of his steadfast love; for he does not afflict from his heart or grieve the children of men.” Lamentations 3:32-33 (ESV)
Prayer: Find assurance in the fact that God does not willingly bring affliction or grief your way. He has no delight in your experience of pain or heartache. God never wastes pain; He always uses it to accomplish His purpose.
“Trust in the LORD, and do good.” Psalm 37:3 (ESV)
Prayer: You’re absolutely dependent upon God yet simultaneously responsible to diligently use whatever means are appropriate for the occasion.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:9 (ESV)
Prayer: God in His infinite wisdom knows exactly what you need to grow more into the likeness of His Son.
“He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Romans 8:32 (ESV)
Prayer: Just as God’s love to His Son cannot change, so His love for you cannot change because you’re in union with the One He loves.
“Steadfast love surrounds the one who trusts in the LORD.” Psalm 32:10 (ESV)
Prayer: God’s love means especially that He is with you in your troubles.
“You formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.” Psalm 139:13 (ESV)
Prayer: God so superintends the biological process that He is directly involved in fashioning you into the person He wants you to be.
“Blessed be the Lord . . . who alone does wondrous things.” Psalm 72:18 (ESV)
Prayer: Learn to receive with thankfulness everything you have from God—disabilities as well as your so-called positive abilities—and seek to use them for His glory.
“In your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.” Psalm 139:16 (ESV)
Prayer: The plan God ordained for you and wrote down in His book even before you were born is a good plan, not a harmful one.
“Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might.” Ecclesiastes 9:10 (ESV)
Prayer: God uniquely created you to fulfill the plan He has ordained for you.
“You shall remember the whole way that the Lord your God has led you.” Deuteronomy 8:2 (ESV)
Prayer: As your shepherd, God has committed Himself to guiding you in the ways He knows to be best.
“Good and upright is the Lord; therefore he instructs sinners in the way. He leads the humble in what is right, and teaches the humble his way.” Psalm 25:8-9 (ESV)
Prayer: God’s plan is not contingent at all. God’s plan is sovereign. It includes your foolish decisions as well as your wise ones.
“Count is all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds.” James 1:12 (ESV)
Prayer: God uses those difficulties to reveal your need to grow so that you’ll reach out to Him. He changes you more and more into the likeness of His Son.
“Blessed is the man whom you discipline, O LORD, and whom you teach out of your law.” Psalm 94:12 (ESV)
Prayer: Just as God teaches you through adversity, you must seek to learn from it.
“The commandment is a lamp and the teaching a light, and the reproofs of discipline are the way of life.” Proverbs 6:23 (ESV)
Prayer: The Word of God and adversity have a synergistic effect as God uses both to bring about growth in your life.
“Every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit.” John 15:2 (ESV)
Prayer: You come to depend on God more and to desire only that which will count for eternity. God is pruning you so you will be more fruitful.
“I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15:5 (ESV)
Prayer: If God is going to use you, He will bring adversity into your life so that you may learn experientially to depend on Him.
“You have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God you may receive what is promised.” Hebrews 10:36 (ESV)
Prayer: It is His strength, not yours, that enables you to persevere, and you take hold of His strength through faith.
“You have tried my heart, you have visited me by night, you have tested me.” Psalm 17:3 (ESV)
Prayer: You obviously don’t seek out adversity just so you can develop a deeper relationship with God. Rather God, through adversity, seeks you out.
“Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.” Psalm 42:11 (ESV)
Prayer: Only the Holy Spirit can make His Word come alive in your heart and create faith. But you can choose to look to Him to do just that rather than be ruled by feelings of anxiety or resentment or grief.
“He said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.’” Hebrews 13:5 (ESV)
Prayer: God wants you to firmly grasp the truth that whatever circumstances may indicate, you must believe, on the basis of His promise, that He has not forsaken you or left you to the mercy of those circumstances.
“I will say to the LORD, ‘My refuge and my fortress, my God in whom I trust.’” Psalm 91:2 (ESV)
Prayer: It seems from experience that God delights in surprising you by His ways of deliverance to remind you that your trust must be in Him and Him alone.
“Trust in the LORD forever, for the LORD GOD is an everlasting rock.” Isaiah 26:4 (ESV)
Prayer: If you’re to trust God, you must acknowledge your dependence upon Him at all times, good times as well as bad, and in times of minor irritations as well as major hardship.
“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:18 (ESV)
Prayer: The basis for giving thanks in the difficult circumstances is what you learn about God in Scripture—His sovereignty, wisdom, and love—as they’re brought to bear upon all the unexpected and sudden shifts and turns in your life.
“Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.” James 4:10 (ESV)
Prayer: As you bow in worship before His almighty power, you can also bow in confidence that He exercises that power for you, not against us.
“Our heart is glad in him, because we trust in his holy name.” Psalm 33:21 (ESV)
Prayer: Only as you know Him intimately and seek to obey Him completely will you be able to establish a trust relationship with Him.
Adapted from 31 Days toward Trusting God, Copyright 2017 by Jerry Bridges. Published by NavPress, navpress.com. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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