Below is my script for Pause for Thought on BBC Radio Devon:
As my daughter and I were recently watching Disney’s ‘The Jungle Book,’ she snuggled in as the snake began his manipulative charm on Mowgli, singing, “Trust in me, just in me…’
Even she could see his sinister intent!
So far this week we’ve looked at the themes of following and anxiety, and now we turn to trust.
Not everyone who says they can be trusted are to be trusted.
Trust is a crucial aspect of human flourishing, and great damage is done when trust is broken.
My role as a church minister involves a great deal of trust, as do many other jobs.
We hope the surgeon is telling the truth when he says, “Trust me, I know what I’m doing!”
But our trust would fly out the window if he said, “Don’t worry, I’ve watched a YouTube video and we’re good to go!”
The only thing that would be good to go, is me – out of the hospital!
Trust reaches to the core of our being. Trust matters because human beings matter.
But trust is no mere leap into the dark. Genuine trust is nurtured in growing discernment.
I trust my wife because there is 30 years of evidence that I can.
Trust is nurtured in children when they are loved and safe.
In the same way, trust in God is evidence based: We can trust God because he is trustworthy.
Our current political climate is very difficult for our politicians.
One the one hand, they need our trust; on the other, it can be frequently broken, often unintentionally.
Sometimes we all just make promises we can’t keep.
C. S. Lewis captures the essence of trust in The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe, when Susan realises that Aslan is a lion and not a man, she says, “Is he-quite safe? I shall feel rather nervous about meeting a lion”…”Safe?” said Mr Beaver …”Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.”
Unlike the manipulative trust of the python in The Jungle Book, Jesus is the trustworthy King.
Biblical trust is no leap into the dark; it is in fact a leap into the light.
God, through the pages of the Bible, invites our trust time and time again.
May we have the wisdom to recognise what may slither into our lives like snakes with manipulative intent, that we may say with the Psalmist:
“I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation. I will sing the Lord’s praise, for he has been good to me.” (Ps 13:5-6)