Lean Not on Our Own Understanding

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3: 5 – 6

Don’t you sometimes become so weary and burdened as you listen to the news each day? I do! Our world seems in such a “mess”, and if you’re like me, you can”t help but be concerned and saddened.

It is heartbreaking to think of what so many are being forced to endure, and our minds simply can’t comprehend the horror of it all. It’s as if we want to cry out to God and ask where He is, just as the prophet Habakkuk did over 2000 years ago when the kingdom of Judah was going through troubled times. “How long, O Lord, must I call for help, but you do not listen? Or cry out to you, “Violence!” but you do not save? Why do you make me look at injustice? Why do you tolerate wrong? Destruction and violence are before me; there is strife, and conflict abounds. Therefore the law is paralyzed, and justice never prevails.” (Habakkuk 1: 1- 4) 

Habakkuk felt as if God was being strangely silent and inactive, just as many people feel He is today. But in truth, God wasn’t absent or indifferent then; nor is He now. He was at work and He had a plan to open the eyes of His people and bring them to Him.

I often have to remind myself of that truth – that God sees and knows all that is going on around us. He is on His throne and He is actively working. We have His promise that He will take all of the evil and injustices and use them for His good. We know that He has an eternal plan just as He did then, and this should bring us much comfort.

We must remember that things are not always as they seem – especially from our perspective. We can’t see the whole picture as God does. He is always at work, it is always according to his purpose, and He will bring divine order out of chaos. He understands how difficult it is for us to patiently endure the turmoil and evil around us, but He has promised that He will render justice to those who deserve it, and He will keep us near to Him.

This verse is one of the most comforting verses in all of Scripture. It can bring such peace and hope to our anxious souls as it reminds us not to “lean on our own understanding” but to trust in Him. If we look to what we know and try to understand with our own limited wisdom, we become weak and the circumstances around us seem overwhelming. But if we focus on God, His sovereignty and power, His love and grace, it all becomes much easier to leave our concerns with Him.

We have no way of knowing what the future holds, but we know who holds our future, and that is our loving God. We must have faith in Him, and remember that He has promised that no matter how many terrible events occur around us, no matter what happens in our own lives, there is absolutely nothing that can separate us from His love and presence. He understands our anxieties, our fears, and our need for His strength and His peace to carry us through these trying times, and He longs to be our comfort and our refuge. May we trust in Him.


Our most sovereign God, our world seems in such chaos, but it brings much comfort to know that you are actively working to accomplish your purpose in our world and in our lives, and that we can trust in you. We ask that you be with those who are living in such dangerous, difficult situations and that your love and peace be upon them. Amen 

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