Jesus met with his disciples in The Upper Room for a last meal before His arrest, trial, crucifixion, and death.
He knew what was coming. They did not.
Jesus explained to His disciples that He was going away; He was leaving the Holy Spirit with them; He would come get them later. So when Jesus drops the bombshell –“Yet a little while longer I’ll be with you, but where I am going you cannot come” (John 13:33, ESV) – the disciples faced a problem.
Each approached solving the problem in different ways. As they asked questions, the disciples show how different strengths are helpful in practicing trust.
Peter: Courageous Trust
“Peter said to him, ‘Lord, why can I not follow you now? I will lay down my life for you’” (John 13:37).
You have to laugh at Peter. Jesus calls Peter to trust and the disciple’s natural response is, “Lord, I will do anything. Just let me do it NOW.” Peter’s aggressive response reminds you to trust God courageously.
Thomas: Goal-Oriented Trust
“Thomas said to him, ‘Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?’” (John 14:5)
Thomas’ desire to remain in Jesus’ presence is strong. With a clear plan to follow, Thomas is able to act in trust. If you’re a Thomas, your determination helps you find and stay on a road to trust.
Philip: Cooperative Trust
Philip said to him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us.” (John 14:8)
Like Philip, you may be accommodating. Your low-key, agreeable approach allows you to trust God patiently and cooperatively.
Thaddeus: A Humble Approach
“Thaddeus said to him, ‘Lord, how is it that you will manifest yourself to us, and not to the world?’” (John 14:22)
Can there be a more Reflective approach to trust? Unassuming Thaddeus was amazed at Jesus’ promise to return specifically to the disciples – over all other people. An unassuming approach to trust, like that of Thaddeus, is a humble embrace of God’s best for you.
How Will You Solve The Problem?
It can be easy to berate yourself in the midst of a transition by saying or thinking, “I should trust God more!”
Yet trust is not a question of volume, but approach. As a Christ-follower, you trust God one way or another. Your trust simply reveals itself in different ways than others.
Perhaps you’re an Aggressive, like Peter or Thomas. You are eager to trust Jesus quickly and forcefully. Or maybe yours is a more Reflective approach, like that of Philip and Thaddeus. You take your time, cautiously considering how to cooperate with humility.
All those approaches are valuable.
When it comes to trust, the true problem to solve is this: how does your approach to trust reflect the strengths God has given you?