ODJ: Trusting God Over Yourself

December 2, 2017 

READ: Luke 1:26-38 

“The word of God will never fail.” Mary responded, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true” (vv.37-38).

Piloting an aircraft can be challenging, but for bush pilots who are trained to take off and land in remote areas, it’s especially hard. Those who fly in colder climates can face whiteout conditions in which it’s impossible to navigate by sight. In these situations, the pilots are trained to rely on their instruments, not their senses. They know that their instruments are more reliable than their personal judgement.

Mary too had to learn not to rely only on her senses in her encounter with the angel Gabriel. The angel said that he had good news for her—that as a virgin she would give birth to God’s Son (Luke 1:31-32). But one might wonder how exactly this was good news for Mary, especially since she had not yet married. In her culture at that time, a woman caught in adultery could be stoned to death (Deuteronomy 22:23-24). So one could easily imagine Mary feeling overwhelmed and perhaps horrified at the ‘good news’ brought by the angel.

Although Mary couldn’t completely understand God’s plan for her, Gabriel assured her that no word from God would fail to accomplish its purpose (Luke 1:37). And so, even though this news was probably frightening to the young woman, she trusted God: “May everything you have said about me come true” (v.38). Like a bush pilot relying on instruments during a storm, she chose not to trust in her comprehension or her emotions, but in the perfect will of God.

Our fragile emotions and our finite understanding will often lead us astray. In those situations, however, we can rest in God and His good plans, not in how we feel or what we know. As we trust in God and choose not to “depend on [our] own understanding”, He will surely guide us (Proverbs 3:5-6).

—Peter Chin

365-day plan: Ephesians 6:10-20

Read 2 Cor. 5:5-7 for a reminder that, as believers in Jesus, God has given us His Holy Spirit to guide us and faith to sustain us. 
When have you been through a situation where you had to trust God over what you saw or felt? What helps you live by faith?