Sunday, July 7, 2013

Learning to Trust

Walking by faith requires trust.  But what happens when you find it hard to trust.  After all, people you thought you could trust may have let you down.  That hurts!  And who wants to experience that kind of hurt again?  So we determine not to trust or depend on anyone but ourselves.  But how's that working for you?

This summer I'm working with preschool children in camp.  Every morning the children have swim instruction.  James was a new four year old child.  As we walked single file towards the swimming pool, he kept telling me he didn't want to go under water.  I introduced James to his swim instructor Jenna and told her about his fear.  I observed James throughout his first swim lesson.

Jenna worked on establishing trust with James.  She took off her sunglasses so he could see her eyes.  She told him she wouldn't let him go.  She held his hand as she taught him to blow bubbles in the water.  He still hadn't put his head in the water though.

Jenna finally got James to lie on his back so he could learn to float.  I could see him struggling for control.  Each time he took his eyes off of Jenna, he began to sink and get scared.  She kept asking James to look at her eyes and reassure him that she wouldn't let him go.  I could see his body relax and ...he floated.

When the lessons were completed, James was smiling and excited. Until the next day ...

Once again, James began to tell me he was not going to go under the water.  Jenna worked with James assuring him that she wouldn't let him go.  Finally, she talked to him about putting his head under the water.  He agreed as she held his hand.  His head went under and then up he came.  He laughed.  It wasn't so bad after all.  When he left to go home that day, he excitedly told his mom that he had gone under the water.

The next day James came to camp, he kept telling me he wasn't going to swim.  I asked him why.  He said he didn't want to put his head under the water.  I asked him if his eyes hurt when he went under the water.  He said no.  I asked him if his ears hurt him and again he said no.  Finally, he looked at me and said "I want to do it myself."

I don't know if James had an experience in the past that caused this fear.  But isn't this something we adults often say?  "I want to do it myself." We are afraid to trust someone else and depend on ourselves even when we don't know what we're doing.

God is trustworthy.  He isn't like humans who may have disappointed us in some way.  As a child of God, He holds our hand.  Sometimes I forget this and get scared.  Instead of looking to Jesus, I look to myself and I begin to sink.

"So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.  I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." Isaiah 41:10

James continues to take swim instruction each day at summer camp. Jenna continues to work with him on developing trust and he is growing in confidence as he makes progress.

How about you?  Are you learning to walk by faith trusting in the God who created you and loves you?  Or are you depending on yourself?


I'm linking up with Charlotte for Spiritual Sundays.

Blessings and love,

14 comments:

  1. Great lesson and analogy Debbie. We MUST keep our eyes on Him! Therein is our hope, and therefore our trust! Hope you have a good day!

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  2. Very nice Debbie -- a verse that goes well with the one you posted above is 1 JOHN 4:18 There is no fear in love,...and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.

    I had to learn trusting and acting on trust before fears and anxiety disapated. Peace and Prayers

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  3. Beautiful share Debbie! I am often drawn to the verse in Isaiah . I am not a great swimmer and it reminded me of that. I like the words you write here and your sincere heart and kindness. Have a beautiful SONday and week! Hugs Anne

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  4. What a fabulous illustration and a timely reminder. I always want to trust HIM, but I still really struggle at times. And, I do want to do it myself way more than I should. Sweetest blessings to you!

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  5. Do Not Be Dismayed - I am too familiar with that! I had to learn to trust Him, on so many, many, many things - and it is keeping my eyes on Him, believing, really believing, what He says. Sweet post, Debbie!

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  6. Jenna sounds like such a patient teacher. I'm so glad we have a Teacher like that as well. I need someone with a lot of patience because I'm often afraid to put my head under water too. Beautifully told, Debbie. Thanks for sharing this story.

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  7. Oh my gosh yes, I am always working on trust! Trust is really faith in another view, don't you think? If James had faith in Jenna, he'd trust right away!

    Great post. I always need a little support in the trust department :)

    Happy Monday,
    Ceil

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  8. There are to sides to this. If children weren't so stubborn about doing things by themselves, they would never learn to walk, talk, eat, swim e.t.c.They would forever be dependent of trustworthy adults.
    I had wise parents who let me ride bicycle, go skiing,jump rope, play with balls, in spite of my poor eyesight.
    Long after I was a grown up, my mother said, we had never expected you to manage this, but we had to let you try.
    And guess what, because of my parents confidence, it never even occurred to me, it was difficult.
    That is also kind of walking in faith.Trusting that our Heavenly Father will not give us trials or challenges he has not equipped us to cope with. And first and foremost knowing that when I'm weak, I am strong, cause then it's swimming teacher God who is carrying me.
    These last years I have over and over again experienced that. Tough lessons, but till this day I have been kept afloat.

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  9. Beautiful, Debbie. I'm trying not to sink this week, but to press on each day and (hopefully) make a little progress. Hugs from VA :)

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  10. Thank God for the many Jennas in my life that have leaned into my fears and expanded my trust. One step at a time - such is my life of faith. Today floating with Jenna. Tomorrow under the water with Jesus. What a lovely picture you've painted.

    peace~elaine

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  11. There are so many days, Debbie, that I just don't want to go in the water! Fear can be the thief of all things good, can't it!? Thank you for sharing about your little friend, James!

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  12. This is such a beautiful lesson for both children and adults, and you have blessed me with it today, Debbie. Three of my grandchildren are doing new things this summer; swimming, gymnastics, and art lessons, to name a few. They each have their own way of responding to a new activity. Some dive right in while others may be more hesitant. I am so thankful that the Father is patient with each of us as we learn to trust Him, just as James learned to trust Jenna and you. What a gift you have, working with these precious little ones.

    P.S. The heat is taking over our chances of rain now, but it has been wonderful to have rain, which we seldom get in July. Perhaps it will come to your area! :)

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  13. I just wrote about water and trust, and then I came over here and this JUST BLESSED ME so big. We are on the same wavelength, sister! Hope you have an amazing week!!

    Ashley from http://theheartofashley.blogspot.com/

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  14. Trusting Jesus....He is so faithful, always there, always dependable. Even when we want to try it ourselves, He is there. Sometimes I don't understand the situations, but I do know this, His ways are above mine, and He is worthy of our (my) trust.

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Am I a kid or what?

Am I a kid or what?

I love this place...Carmel, CA

I love this place...Carmel, CA