Posted by: mikenicholsblog | February 17, 2010

take a snapshot

Very few illustrations of trust paint a better picture, than that of a young child holding the strong hand of Dad. A child seems to know instinctively that they are secure.

Throughout the journey from childhood to adolescence, something happens. The introduction of independence, developing their own set of opinions, and being influenced by friends, television, computer games etc… often causes trust to be filtered through the thick net of skepticism. Dad is still loved, but no longer implicitly trusted. Parallel the independent teenager with how we love, but often filter, the messages of God. He communicates to us in a variety of ways, but would an impromptu snapshot of our trust reveal childlike faith?

Exodus 6:9 (NIV)
Moses reported this to the
Israelites, but they did not
listen to him because of their
discouragement and cruel

Exodus 6:9 (MSG)
But when Moses delivered this
message to the Israelites, they
didn’t even hear him-they were
that beaten down in spirit by the
harsh slave conditions.

Understanding the context of the above verses is important. God had told Moses to let the Israelites know that He would release them from slavery, and would take them as His own people (read verses 6-8). But their bondage in Egypt had made the Israelites skeptical. God was serious about His plan, but the filter of discouragement and bondage caused the counsel to fall on deaf ears. In fairness, I (and you) may have struggled the same way. The spiritual portrait of my life may not always involve discouragement, but other filters can also easily drown out God’s voice. Have you found that the struggles and pains of life cause you sometimes to listen to the counsel of God like that way skeptical teenager?

God’s Word is Truth. His Truth read, and applied will be a path of joy. During my teenage years, I knew my Dad had wisdom, but I wanted my own way. It is not much different with the way we view God and His Word. We know the Truth, but filtering it through “our way” will hinder God’s working in us. You may have felt the pain of trying to help your son or daughter, only to have them choose “their way” and suffer because of it. How we must make God feel, when we choose the same?

To help us gain perspective, consider a well-known verse …

Joshua 1:8
Do not let this Book of the Law
depart from your mouth;
meditate on it day and night,
so that you may be careful to
do everything written in it.
Then you will be prosperous
and successful.

Many can quote this verse, but many more tend to put meditating on God’s Word through their filters, and remove its power. We all have a variety of “why we don’t” reasons. But what would happen if, with childlike trust, we meditated on the Word day and night? Look no further than the conclusion of the verse … we would have His success.

Our background, emotions, personal pain and current circumstances can remove the power of God’s Word in our lives … if we let them. Challenge yourself to know and apply His Word with childlike trust. Imagine what that would do to the portrait of your life!


  1. That is a convicting and powerful thought on filtering God’s word and promises to be true in theory, but not in practice. Thanks for the challenge and reminder to take possession of God’s promises. I needed this today.

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