I have accomplished many things that give me satisfaction. When I put together a small group program and see people connecting, I feel good. When I am able to help someone get involved in an area of service where they flourish, I am thankful to God. When I finish a paper and hand it in, it gives me a sense of accomplishment, especially if I get a good grade.
God has also blessed me with many friends, an amazing wife, children who value me, parents who care about me, and various mentors, counselors, and advisers. When I think of all the people in my life, I am truly grateful for the love that comes my way.
I am also financially stable. I have money in the bank. I’m putting money toward retirement. My church takes good care of me.
The problem is that sometimes I try to do things and fail. Sometimes people hurt me or are not there for me. Sometimes I get a bill that’s big, and I’m not sure how I’m going to pay for it. If I lean too hard on any of these things for value, love, or provision, they fail me.
And that reminds me that all of these gifts cannot be the ultimate source of my value, love, or provision.
The ultimate source of my value, love, and provision is God Himself and the promises in His Word that He loves me, values me, and will take care of me.
Most of our great sins and pathologies arise from trying to take God’s good gifts and make them the ultimate source of our love, value, and provision.
It is only when we trust in God’s promises that we have an unshakable foundation of value, love, and provision. It is only when we trust in God that we can value His gifts for what they are and not turn them into an idol.
Trust in God is necessary to human functioning and flourishing (for a fuller discussion of this issue, see my article here).