Unconditional trust

“I trust you, Lord, no matter what.” This is a statement of abandon. I have flung my life—and now fling my life every day—into God’s care. No matter what. This is an unconditional trust. Trust is usually contextual. “I trust that such-and-such will happen.” “I trust God to bring us money.” “I trust that this particular belief of mine is true.” There’s nothing wrong with such statements, but it is possible in each case to be disappointed.

Think of Morpheus in Matrix Revolutions after his ship, the Nebuchadnezzar, was destroyed. He had trusted in a particular prophecy to come true. He had staked his life on that belief. At that moment, he became completely disillusioned—crushed, devastated, bewildered. Such is how I felt at my lowest moment. I was forced to accept that my conception of reality might be untrue. My faith hinged on the denial of other truths. Awareness of these truths became so severe that my faith was brought to the breaking point. Here too my trust was contextual: “I trust that God is principally a person.” “I trust that my belief system is true.”

God, in His infinite mercy, withdrew Himself from my awareness, putting to death once and for all my idols of belief. He became a metaphor for me after that. He became impersonal and thus nothing more than a personification. Words don’t adequately capture the experience, but it was as if my attachment to the Personhood of God was the thing that kept me from knowledge of the Personhood of God. When I was no longer invested, when I no longer had a “horse in the game”—that’s when God became most real to me. That’s when the Universe, Life, God, Ultimate Reality, whatever you want to call it, revealed its infinite, unconditional Love for me. For me!

To experience the love of God, to experience being watched over, cared for, and guided—of course I experience God to be personal now—yet more mysterious than ever before. I’m no longer attached to a particular theory or theology or cosmology. I’m still very curious about it all. I still draw on the rich wisdom and profundity and encouraging expressions of truth I find in the Bible. I even pray to Jesus. But the Love is all a big Mystery to me now. The metaphors and names and concepts and theories are interesting and fun to play with, but I don’t put my trust in any of them.

I see God everywhere now, not only in certain contexts delineated by my religion. For me, Christianity has become an expression of my faith, not the arbiter of my faith. I am so grateful for Jesus and Paul and the Psalms of David and their rich words of wisdom that give expression to the Love that I now know is real. I’m grateful for the promises of God in the Bible which I can “hide in my heart,” thereby guarding it. But my trust transcends the Bible. That’s why I can read it so freely. I don’t need to “make it true.” Lest I construct more idols, I remain, as best as I can, unattached to particular interpretations. I stay curious about what doesn’t resonate with me, suspending resolution. Paradox, after all, being the nature of the Universe, is good for the soul.

So, yes, I celebrate my tradition and engage fully on the path I have chosen. I feed on the words and practices that promote peace and balance. I pray and serve with other Christians. I express my deepest gratitude to God in communal worship. But my trust extends beyond all of these. With wild abandon I cast my life on Life Itself. God is trustworthy!