Learning Dependence on God

A strong willed child? A rough marriage? Financial problems? What will cause our knees to bend? We all have trials and tribulations that force us to question the purpose of our troubles within the big scheme of things. We wonder why we can’t be stronger and overcome this adversity in our own strength.

Yet, are these questions really as perplexing as they seem? In scripture God doesn’t say all we need is our self-sufficiency. He created this relationship of dependence and reliance on a God, who is bigger than our situation and personal abilities.

We are glad whenever we are weak but You are strong; and our prayer is that you may be fully restored.

2 Corinthians 13:9

Of course, like most things, these personal trials are not cut and dry. They do however, all have the common denominator of making us feel overwhelmed and not in control. Thankfully, there is One who can calm the seas and grant us peace during these tribulations. His name is Jesus Christ.

And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:7

In John 15 God says, “Apart from Me you can do nothing.” I have tried to prove this concept wrong and failed. I have tried clawing my way to self reliance, but why was this the sought after prize? Sure it boosts our pride if we feel we achieved such a measure on our own accord, but is the satisfaction of doing something on our own really that satisfying if it is only a fraction of the things we can do with Christ’s help?

There is a story found in Luke 15 about a son who took his inheritance from his father early. Seeking independence, he squandered his wealth on frivolous things. After he spent all his money, this broken man was resorted to work caring for pigs with barely enough food to survive. After much trial he finally realized he wanted and needed to be under His father’s care. Unfortunately, sometimes, we too have to come to that same low point to recognize we need to be reliant on our Heavenly Father.

Well mayest thou then work on indocile hearts;
By small successes, disappointments small;
By nature, weather, failure, or sore fall;
By shame, anxiety, bitterness, and smarts;
By loneliness, by weary loss of zest.
The rags, the husks, the swine, the hunger quest,
Drive home the wanderer to the Father’s breast.

George MacDonald