The primal sin began with a breach of TRUST:
Did God really say you could not eat of any of the trees in the
garden? Since that fateful day in Eden, humanity has been on a
long trek back to unconditional, unwavering TRUST
in God, our Father and Creator. It is, to be sure, the task of a
lifetime. But restoration of TRUST is the essence
of the Gospel: Unless you change and become as little childnen, you
shall not enter the kingdom of heaven.
The dictionary defines TRUST as a resting
of the mind on the integrity, veracity, justice, friendship or love
of another person. The key word here is resting.
TRUST enables us to lay to rest our worries, fears
and anxieties so that we can repose our concerns, hopes and cares in
someone stronger than ourselves. A child has that kind of
TRUST in a parent. A believer needs to have that kind of
TRUST in God.
Logically speaking, we should be able to TRUST
God totally. His integrity, truthfulness, justice and love are
infinite. Yet the breach which sin made in our relationship with God
remains. It is not an uncrossable gulf — the Lord Himself has
provided an array of TRUST-building materials; the
Scriptures, the sacraments, the theological virtues. He has given us
the example of His saints, all of whom excelled in TRUST.
At first, the success of these holy TRUST-builders
might frighten us, Can we really have the same unbounded
TRUST in God that Francis of Assisi had when he
cast aside even the clothes he was wearing to declare that he had a
Father in heaven? Could our TRUST really equal
Francis' certainty that the Lord would provide for his every need,
from the next meal to safety in the face of wolf or robber or rival?
Can we, often so calculating or cost-counting, fretful or fearful,
meet challenges and sufferings with a TRUST like
that of the Poor Man of Assisi, who sang of God's goodness even as
he carried the cross of pain, disappointment, misunderstanding and
Yes — because the God in whom we TRUST is the
same infinitely loving, merciful, patient God in whom St, Francis
trusted! Often we doubt our ability to achieve the TRUST
which the saints had because we see only the end of their lifetime
striving but miss the effort that went into reaching it. For
TRUST is a virtue which needs to be practiced. As we grow
in faith by believing, so we grow in TRUST by
trusting. Sometimes God asks for "liftlen leaps of faith and "small"
acts of TRUST. Then, as we become accustomed to
walking by faith and living in TRUST, the Divine
Teacher will offer larger, more demanding opportunities to
TRUST in Him.
And if we miss the mark — He is still there, as He was for St.
Francis. When the Seraphic Patriarch wept and wondered about the
future of his religious family, Christ asked; Why are you
worried, O little man? Do you not know the Order is mine? When
Francis, nearly blind and weary with pain, trembled at the thought
of divine judgment, the Lord with supreme kindness offered him an
assurance of eternal salvation.
It will be the same for us as we apply ourselves to this task of
a lifetime. God will always be there, waiting for us to trustingly
make our little and large leaps of faith into His open arms. The
reward of TRUST is so great. No wonder the prophet
could cry out: TRUST in the Lord