Monday, 16 March 2015

Choosing to trust God

Trying to stop feeling fear

What does trusting God feel like? I used to think I wasn't trusting Him because I felt fearful in the face of difficulties. I thought I was a failure. I would read the Bible and pray, waiting for the fear to go and for the trust to arrive. I tried to metaphorically grit my teeth and work up a feeling of faith. But that never really worked. It simply left me feeling even worse, more of a failure and wondering what I had done wrong. 

This week I read Psalm 55. I have read it before but this time it hit me right between the eyes. Especially verses 4 and 5 - "My heart pounds in my chest...fear and trembling overwhelm me, and I can't stop shaking". King David, Israel's greatest King, the man after God's own heart was shaking with fear due to the situation in which he found himself. He wanted to fly away from the situation. He wanted to run away. 

Trust is a choice

It was a revelation to me. I knew the psalms were full of emotion but somehow the day I read this psalm that truth fell the 12 inches from my head into my heart. I read on to see what David would say next. Verses 16 -18, 22  contain these words, 
But I will call on God,

and the Lord will rescue me.

Morning, noon, and night

I cry out in my distress,

and the Lord hears my voice.

Give your burdens to the Lord,

and he will take care of you
David chose to turn to God as an act of his will, despite shaking with fear. If you had asked me before this week, I would have told you that trusting God is an act of our will but somehow this week that truth dropped down into my heart. My eyes were opened. I'm not letting God down by feeling fearful at first sight of any difficulties. He is waiting to see what I will do despite my fear. He is waiting for me to chose faith, to choose trust. 

And the amazing thing is that once I have chosen to trust Him the fearful feelings often go, or at least they lessen. The mistake I made before was trying to stop the fear first and then to trust. It doesn't work that way. I know now I need to trust God as an act of my will whilst feeling scared. Then the fear often does go. Like the priests of Israel carrying the arc of the covenant across the River Jordan into the Promised Land. The river did not part until they had stepped into the water. 

Are you facing a difficult situation? Do as a shaking, fearful David did. Chose to trust God as an act of your will. Give Him your situation whilst still feeling afraid and wait to see what God will do for you. 

Lynda Alsford currently works a GP receptionist and writes in her spare time. She has self-published two books. He Never Let Go describes her journey through a major crisis of faith whilst working as an evangelist at a lively Church in Chiswick, West London. Being Known describes how God set her free from food addiction. Both books are available in paperback and on kindle on and

Lynda loves living near the sea in Sussex, UK and can't stop taking photos of the sun setting into the sea. Find out more about her at or at


  1. Great post. Lynda. I love your honesty. Thank you for the reminder that in the midst of trouble we should always trust God

  2. Yes great, honest post. I love spending time in the psalms precisely because it makes me feel more 'normal' and helps me to remember to speak to my soul and turn my face to God to trust him despite how I'm feeling :)

  3. and that is exactly what jesus did from the cross. In his distress said to God, "my God my God why have you abandoned me?" He took his pain to God and told Him what he really felt, but still chose to commit his spirit to God when he died.

  4. Thanks for this lesson. Glad I saw it via Joy Lenton.

  5. I have a comment, andI hope people will take it the right way: not as criticism but as an observation over a long time. If we were not given the impression that we must aways be smiling and trusting, always-happy-because-we-are-Christians then maybe the issue of 'honesty' (and of 'openness') would not be so difficult to admit to in church circles, and so surprising to find. Isn't it sad that many people feel, and have felt, that they must not admit to doubt/depression/fear and many other things which our Father God knows we have? Was reading about not being anxious in my Lent book today, and even though Jesus says all this about not worrying, he says it to reassure that the understands us, he never said it like a rule or that finding life's knocks didn't hurt us was the mark of faith - and that honestly admitting we're human is wrong ...we have to just remember, come back, and be reassured over and over, as Lynda has talked of here. I hope this doesn't sound preachy: it's just hit me how often people speak of honesty (about ourselves) in Christian circles as if it is quite amazing to find it being admitted to.

  6. Transferring knowledge from our heads to our hearts can take a long time. I enjoyed this post and the comments.

  7. I agree Mari. I'd love to see churches become more real and honest about fear/depression etc. i have found that it is in coming to God as i really am with all the pain, hurt, depression, anger etc that enables me to change. So often we try to get rid of the tough emotions before we come to God and that is so sad. Jesus died that we might come to God just as we are. Being real in God's Presence is life changing. I pray all churches will learn to show this.

  8. My take on faith and trust .......

    Faith consists of two things - trust and knowledge. One can hardly trust someone you do not know – or distrust for that matter. I.e. faith in God is based on our knowledge of God. Those who do not know God, cannot have faith in Him or trust Him. Our faith in God is based on what He has done in the past (Scripture) and in our own lives. Hence the command to spread the Gospel = to tell people of Jesus so they can know Him, trust Him, and consequently have faith in Him.

    Therefore, when knowledge is there, trust/distrust come naturally based on what we know. If someone (in this case God) has proven to be wise, loving, reliable, caring, whatever ..., then trust comes naturally – one do not have to make a choice.

    It is however possible not to trust, in spite of knowing better