Trusting God

By Brian Ward, age 14


Why should I follow God when He doesn't give me enough of an explanation?


There are many instances where God asks us to do things while not explaining why we should. Sometimes, what He asks us to do seems to go against our better judgment. But the several Bible characters who faced this issue and decided to trust and follow God always had good outcomes. That's why you should follow God.

Noah had been following God when his big moment occurred. God said to Noah:

The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth. Make thee an ark of gopher wood; rooms shalt thou make in the ark, and shalt pitch it within and without with pitch. (Gen. 6:13, 14)

Noah, without knowing what an ark was or how he would get two or seven of every animal into it, gets to work right away. As we know, his trust in God's words and directions saves his life and the lives of his family.

Editor's Note: Can you imagine what you might have felt like if you were Noah and God asked you to build a huge wooden box in your backyard without an instruction manual, with only God's words to follow? It doesn't seem logical. What do you think the neighbors were saying, especially since it took such a long time to build? It took a lot of courage for him to obey God and build an ark in a desert country where rain was not an every-day occurrence. And yet God blessed him and his family. The promise of the rainbow is God's covenant with us never to destroy us but rather to protect us (Gen 9:13). Today it still serves as a reminder of God's dear love for us.

Abram, whose name was changed to Abraham, also made the choice to follow God. In the beginning of Abram's story, God tells him to leave his home country. With no other explanation than that God would make his "name great" and a "great nation" would come from him, Abram leaves the country he has lived in all his life (Gen. 12: 2). This decision must have taken a great deal of courage. Abram puts his trust in God, and lives a fruitful life because of it.

Editor's Note: Abram's father was an idol maker. Yet, the Bible never tells us that Abram struggled to leave behind the concept of gods with which he was raised. He was instantly willing to follow the one true God. And because of his willingness to be obedient without arguing, complaining, or discussing the pros and cons of leaving his homeland, we have all been blessed with the knowledge that one God is in charge of our lives and the universe.

Another individual who follows God is Jacob. There are many instances in Genesis where God tells Jacob to leave this place or build that. In every instance, Jacob asks no questions and does as God directs him. One specific example occurs when God tells Jacob to go to Bethel and make an altar unto God. No other explanation was offered at that time; apparently what God was planning was on a need-to-know basis. As he and his family left, God protected them, and the people in the surrounding towns did not pursue Jacob.

Editor's note: Before leaving, Jacob had his entire household get rid of the idols they were worshipping. This was an active sign that Jacob was putting God first and wanted his entire family (who were living in an area surrounded by those who worshipped many gods, and who themselves worshipped idols) to worship God. No wonder, then, that they were protected throughout their journey. Once they get to Bethel, Jacob and his family receive the blessing that comes from following God alone: "… thy name shall not be called any more Jacob, but Israel shall be thy name… a company of nations shall be of thee, and kings … And the land which I gave Abraham and Isaac, to thee I will give it, and to thy seed" (Gen. 35:10-12)

God gives us plenty of ways to tell us what he wants of us. A simple requirement is for us to follow the Ten Commandments. If we follow these rules, then we are obeying God. God communicates to us in various ways -- through "a still small voice" (I Kings 19:12), through others, even through writing.

These three examples (along with many more Bible stories) show us several things. First, if God wants us to do something, He'll let us know. In addition, He may not always give us what we would consider enough reasoning or explanation for what He wants us to do. Lastly, if God does instruct us to act, we should follow His word without question of motives, consequences, or outcome. Because when we follow God, there is always a blessing.