Trust in the Lord

Posted by Nick Luken on 6/10/16 7:00 AM

College Graduate looking uncertain
Image: Henderson State University.

If there’s one thing that has become clear to me over the past year, it’s that I need to get better at trusting the Lord.  The past 10 months marked the last two semesters of my college career, and during those months, I couldn’t help but feel at least a little afraid of what was coming after I finished school. 

I had no idea what I would be doing once I graduated—no job lined-up, no sure-fire business connections that would land me a position in my field as soon as I grabbed my diploma. 

There were only two things I knew would definitely be happening after I got out of college: I would be staying at my parents’ house to save up some money before permanently moving out, and I would be looking for work in the field of writing and editing. 

Other than that, my post-college life was going to be whatever came my way, and that scared me. During the school year, though, I was able to leave my uncertain future up to the Lord relatively easily since I had classes, internships, and school activities to worry about.

I started wasting entire afternoons playing video games and browsing the Internet, which would distract me for a while, but always ended up making me feel worse. On a lot of days, I felt frankly miserable because I either had nothing to do or wasted so much time doing almost nothing that I felt almost worthless. 

I occasionally thought about addressing these feelings with the Lord in prayer and asking him to help me snap out of it, but I always let the instant gratification of gaming or browsing win over prayer. I still engaged in daily personal prayer, but my prayers became hollow, and they never got to the heart of the uselessness I felt almost every day.

Comfort in Prayer

That is, they didn’t until I decided one Sunday night that I’d had enough. It had been what felt like a long time since I’d entered into a meditative prayer, so I decided to say a Divine Mercy chaplet before I went to bed. Since I haven’t memorized the whole prayer, particularly the optional opening and closing prayers, I opened the Divine Mercy app on my phone.

Trust in the Lord through prayer
Image: Chris Barbuhr.

The app includes all the prayers that make up the chaplet in order, but it also includes some interesting material on the chaplet, the life of St. Faustina, from whose diary the chaplet is taken, and even some quotes from St. Faustina’s diary itself. 

I had never looked at these materials before, and I didn’t know much about St. Faustina other than her affiliation with the Divine Mercy Chaplet, so I decided to look at some of the diary passages before I started the prayer.

The app pulled up an alphabetical list of different themes in the diary, and each theme included several passages related to it. For some reason, one of the themes that struck me the most was one that I saw without having to scroll: distrust. 

The diary entries in this category were heartbreaking in a way I have never experienced before. All of them were written from God’s perspective and focused on how much pain the Lord experiences when someone does not trust him. 

One that hit me especially hard went like this: “My heart is sorrowful . . . because even chosen souls do not understand the greatness of My mercy. Their relationship [with me] is, in certain ways, imbued with mistrust. Oh, how much that wounds my heart! Remember my Passion, and if you do not believe my words, at least believe my wounds.” Jesus’ heart being wounded by mistrust? 

The thought had never occurred to me.

Something else had not yet occurred to me: distrust was exactly the problem with which I had been dealing. I didn’t trust that I would find a job at some point, even if it didn’t happen right away. I didn’t trust that, even though prayer wouldn’t be as instantly gratifying as other things I could do, it would be infinitely more satisfying and important in the long run. 

From small things to big things, every time I didn’t trust the Lord, I let myself get farther and farther away from him.  This short, but powerful passage opened my eyes to my distrust, and from the moment I said the words “Jesus, I trust in You” during the Divine Mercy Chaplet I said that night, I remade a commitment to trust in the Lord, no matter what my life was like.

It’s easy to forget how important it is to trust God no matter what, but it’s immensely important. It allows us to be at peace in any situation, whether too busy or too idle. It will never be easy, but I will never stop trying to put my trust in the Lord, and I pray that none of us ever will.

Our guest blogger, Nick Luken, has been blogging at "God's Whispers" since 2014. He is a graduate of the Ohio State University. 

Don't Panic by Maureen Pratt

Topics: Prayer, graduation, trust