People working in groups – in therapy, management retreats, workshops of all kinds and colors – are often asked to play a game, involving one member of the group toppling backwards, the others moving to catch her before she can hit the ground. They’re called “trust falls” and they’re meant to demonstrate the faith that you can place in other members of your team, creating bonds where previously there were individuals. Your whole is greater than the sum of your parts.
Sadly, there’s no real evidence that the game itself does build any kind of rapport or connection between individuals.
What’s interesting here is that people, deep down, believe that creating this kind of you-have-my-back-i-have-yours trust with others is an essential part of the human condition. When in fact, the world is an environment that fosters distrust and a lack of faith in the connections between individuals.
We’re used to the unreliable being the default and because of this, we often see love as a mercurial thing or something that can abruptly ebb and flow depending on circumstance. Age, a change of appearance, a traumatic experience, time spent apart, even replacement by another person – all of these things and more can lead to mistrust or being let down by someone you love. And perhaps even worse is when it’s actually us who’s the unreliable one: when something we’ve said, or something we’ve done, is cause for a change of heart or mistrust.
God isn’t unreliable. His love for us doesn’t ebb – there are no peaks and troughs with Him, just a constancy of love – and His love isn’t dependent on our good behavior.
No matter how lovable we may be at any given moment, God loves us as much as He did in our worst moment the weeks before. His love isn’t dependent on us maintaining the best versions of ourselves in front of Him for as long as possible, or in projecting an image of that person for the world to see. The world may see it: He sees us. We can’t hide from God who we are and what we’re about. He saw it long before we were born, knows who we are, how we’re feeling and hears the erratic beat of our secret heart… and He loves us regardless, overwhelmingly and unceasingly.
When something is that constant, it changes you. Having a permanent home changes the way you walk out of the house: having an endless wave of love to fall back on, to rest in, can give you the courage to move mountains.
That’s how faith works: by trusting love.
A lack of faith allows doubt to creep in. We begin to speculate about our circumstances, and open ourselves up to theorizing about how things will turn out. Because we’re not in tune with the mind of God, we begin to prefer our own opinions as to how He feels, which inevitably leads to second-guessing. We end up exhausting ourselves just thinking about it.
When faith becomes more powerful than the problems we face, we are fully persuaded.
When we allow ourselves to be truly loved in each situation—the consequences always lead to breakthrough.
Think about how the Holy Spirit can comfort you in your moments of adversity. Think about what He might be disclosing to you. Most of all, enjoy it! Enjoy his easy confidence that faith brings.
Trust may fall, but faith leaps.
P.S. To learn more on trusting love, be sure to download “Mind of a Saint.“