Who do you trust?

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Proverbs 3:1-8 (NASB)

1 My son, do not forget my teaching,
            But let your heart keep my commandments;

      2 For length of days and years of life
            And peace they will add to you.

      3 Do not let kindness and truth leave you;
            Bind them around your neck,
            Write them on the tablet of your heart.

      4 So you will find favor and good repute
            In the sight of God and man.

      5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart
            And do not lean on your own understanding.

      6 In all your ways acknowledge Him,
            And He will make your paths straight.

      7 Do not be wise in your own eyes;
            Fear the LORD and turn away from evil.

      8 It will be healing to your body
            And refreshment to your bones.

“Hubba, hubba, hubba, who do you trust?”

I am a sucker for a good superhero movie or show. The line above is from the 1989 “Batman” movie, uttered by Jack Nicholson’s Joker. He was trying to create havok in the city. Usually, he was successful. But the real question is: “Who DO you trust?” When trouble and trials come, who do you turn to?

I heard a sermon once on these verses. The sermon did encourage me to continually place my trust in God. These verses also have elements of the most quoted verses in the Bible and the Torah…the Shema (Deuteronomy 6:4-9). Verse 1 uses the term “commandments”, which in this overall context can recall the idea of ‘commandments’ from Deuteronomy 6:2. Verse 3 has the phrase “bind them around your neck and write them on the tablet of your heart”. This recalls a similar command from Deuteronomy 6:8-9. And “with all your heart” in verse 5 recalls a similar phrase from Deuteronomy 6:5. The Shema instructed the Hebrew people to “hear” or “listen”. Proverbs 1:8 and 2:2 also use the words “hear” or “listen”. This whole area of chapters 1-3 seem to have different variants of the Shema, therefore hearkening back to it while also expanding upon it.

Verse 3 also has the phrase “kindness and truth”. The word used for “kindness” can also be translated “mercy”. In Hebrew, context is everything. The word used for kindness has also been used in other verses to indicate God’s covenant love with Israel. Even though the context does not allow it here, the auditory reminder would be there for the Israelites.

Verse 5 talks about the hardest word in the whole pericope…trust. This verse is special to me. I was very frustrated and angry one night. I told God I needed to hear from him. I was about to borderline give up on faith. He provided me with this verse. It has a “Job” moment quality. I wish I could say it has been “all peachy” since then. I still struggle. I think if we are honest, we all do. The word trust in this verse comes from the Hebrew word “betah”. I wish, oh how I wish, there was a magic formula here but there isn’t. The real magic is in the overall context…”obey, bind, write, trust, lean”. Literally, lean on God. In the ’90’s, there was this group binding exercise called a “trust fall”. You fell backwards while trusting your new friends to catch you. You literally trust them to catch you. We seem to be able to trust what we see more than what we cannot see. #proverbs3:5

I found this article that is titled, “Fuels and Society: c. Fuel Thermodynamics/What chemistry teaches us about Compression Engines”. It appears to be written by William Kovarik out of Radford University. There is a sidebar in the article that states, “Thermodynamics is troubling and demands a new level of trust and belief. In introducing the concept of Entropy (S), defined as a thermodynamic function that measures randomness or disorder, we ask the student to believe in a concept that can NOT be directly observed.” Part of me is sitting here going, “Entropy is Randomness?? Really??” They go on to talk about the effect of pressure on molecules. There is a line in the article that is interesting and hilarious at the same time: in regard to the second law of thermodynamics, “in any spontaneous process there is always an increase of entropy in the universe (system plus surroundings). A process is spontaneous if the result is an increase in disorder.” So, an increase in pressure can result in the increase of entropy. There are words there that can be taken into psychology and real life that are so true. An increase in pressure (stress) can result in the increase of entropy (disorder/chaos). And we humans wonder why stress creates disorder…because it is scientific!! And we are asked to trust what we cannot see. Often, our chaos causes problems with our trust (I know it usually does for me).

I hope these words are encouraging to you. The study was interesting to me. Let me know what you think.

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2 thoughts on “Who do you trust?

  1. I like the entropy “discussion”. Reminds me of a book I read My Big TOE by T. Campbell.
    Entropy concept can be applied in our randomness of thinking/ dispersed attention (I like to play with this, for fun and as a way of exploring).
    Another thing that pops up in my mind, from the same book/ similar topic, is the idea of “more uncertain the outcome, more options are available”

    Liked by 1 person

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