Written by Holly Madden, LeadHer Local Director. Connect with Holly on Instagram.

We face disappointment at every turn. The death of a dream, the loss of a relationship, the burden of finances, or the grief of illness.

As I’ve personally poured over David’s songs in the books of Psalms, I have discovered that the heart of worship is not always expressed in joy, but often in sorrow. In fact, the most authentic worship is that which is offered as a sacrifice when our circumstances are hard, our bodies are tired, and we find ourselves disappointed.

As we get older, we learn hard lessons about who we can trust. If we are wise, we understand the great value of trust in relationship and we learn to earn the trust of others because we understand that they too have been hurt and disappointed in life. We also learn to guard our trust. Sometimes our reasons for guarding are justified, sometimes they are not. Trust can be broken and taken away so quickly that the action with which to give trust becomes a process. When we enter seasons of disappointment, sometimes the hardest trust to give is to God.

Here are a few things I’ve learned along this journey:

  1. God is big enough to handle our hardest questions. God does not demand obedience, He longs for a relationship where He knows us and we constantly grow in knowing Him.
  2. We can test God’s trustworthiness but examining His character throughout history. The Bible provides countless stories that document people just like you and me and who had experienced moments when they had to decide to trust.
  3. Even when it’s hard and it doesn’t seem to make sense, giving God our trust is one of our purest forms of worship.

Our LeadHer Local Teaching Team spent this month studying Psalm 40:3-5. This passage was written at the end of David’s life as he is imparting wisdom to his son, Solomon. David was a man who experienced much disappointment. As a child, he was anointed King but after faithfully serving God in the palace and on the battlefield, he became King Saul’s most wanted and spent years hiding in caves to preserve his life. When he was first summoned to the Palace to make music to soothe the king’s distressed spirit, David found a family relationship with King Saul and his son Jonathan. Saul betrayed and abandoned David as family, and David while still close with Jonathan, never saw his dear friend again. David experienced raw disappointment.

Yet in this Psalm, David tells Solomon that, “Blessed is the man who makes the Lord his trust.” (Psalm 40:4a, ESV).

The pronoun used to describe the word trust is the word, His. This is a pronoun that expresses a sense of belonging. Your trust belongs to you. It is yours to decide who to give it away to, and when to keep it close.

To trust is a sacrifice. It requires vulnerability.

Our trust is one of the most sacred things we give away. This is because it’s one of the only things that we can claim control of. Our trust is ours and to give it away is a gift.

To trust God is to worship.

There is no greater form of worship than when we lay our circumstances at the foot of the cross and declare that no matter what, we trust that God has a plan.  God gave His one and only son for us, and in return we give Him our trust.

Our relationship with God has so many moving parts. While the decision to receive salvation literally only requires a prayer of confession and belief, the decision to remain in relationship with Jesus requires sacrifice, time, desire, and trust.

The people we love most dear in this life, be it family or close friends, are often the people we trust the most. If you evaluate how great your level of trust in God, what does that say about the depth of your love? To love God is meaningless if it is not followed up with our trust.

Psalm 40:4 declares that “Blessed is the man who makes the Lord his trust.” God’s purpose for you is not simply to win your trust and worship, but to return your gift with his blessings. It is when we choose to trust that we begin to see answers to our most desperate prayers. It is when we choose to trust that we experience intimacy with God that truly transforms our hearts and minds. It is when we choose to trust that we begin to understand grace and mercy so deeply that we are moved to share them with those in our lives who are equally as undeserving as us. When we give God our trust we worship.