The Spiritual Practice of Trusting in God: Day 2 of 8

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Our Entire Being

-Rick Hocker

I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. -Ephesians 3:16-19 (NIV)

Have you ever wondered what the difference is between faith and trust? Faith is a belief. This belief emanates from the soul, more than from the mind. Trust is an action. We have faith in God, but how does that translate into action?

Trust is the action of placing our confidence in God. It's not just a mental exercise; it involves our entire being. In 2004, I had a back injury that left me bedridden for six months. I was in excruciating pain during that time. My doctors were no help. I had no income. My medical debts mounted. Life had collapsed on me. I could make no sense out of what I was going through. I was a prisoner in my own body, barely able to move. I prayed a lot. I couldn't do anything else but pray. Lying in bed, I spent a lot of time staring at my bedroom ceiling. The ceiling and I became special friends, kind of like the volleyball Tom Hanks spoke to in the movie Castaway. I could see no way out of my predicament, and I despaired.

One morning, when I was without hope, God spoke to me. He said that I was mentally incapable of understanding His purposes behind my ordeal. That was His polite way of saying I was dense. He also said I would not be disappointed in the end. In fact, He repeated that promise three times just to make sure I got the message. I took heart and chose to believe that God could create something worthwhile out my darkness, although I could not see how. I chose to trust.

In one sense, I had no choice. In another sense, I did have a choice. I could have chosen to continue to fear. I could have chosen more despair. Most of the time, God wasn't accessible to me during that ordeal. It felt as though He had withdrawn Himself on purpose. I sought God and He was not to be found when I needed Him the most. So I told the bedroom ceiling my fears and questions, because when you're mentally dense like me, you talk to ceilings. My progress was slow, but I did make a full recovery. I found work again and was able to pay off my debts.


About the Author

Rick Hocker is a game programmer, artist, and author. In 2004, he sustained a back injury that left him bedridden in excruciating pain for six months, followed by a long recovery. He faced the challenges of disability, loss of income, and mounting debt. After emerging from this dark time, he discovered that profound growth had occurred. Three years later, he had a dream that inspired him to write his award-winning book Four in the Garden. His intent was to illustrate one's growth toward deep communion with God, and to share the insights he gained from the personal transformation that resulted from his back injury. Rick lives in Martinez, California, with his husband, Mark. Find out more at rickhocker.com and at  amazon.com/dp/0991557700.