I don't believe in the Bible anymore.
I used to, though. This is a choice I’ve made. “Belief” in God connotes— at least as I see it—a set of ideas about God that may, if time allows, eventually make their way to other parts of my being.
The older I get, making sure all my “beliefs” of God are lined up as they should be loses more and more of its luster. I see the Bible focusing a lot more on something far more demanding: trust. Try it. Which is harder to say? I believe in God or I trust God?
I see a huge difference between “I believe in a God who cares for me” and “I trust God at this particular moment.” The first is a bit safer, an article of faith. The latter is unnerving, risky— because I have let go. You’ve all heard of the “trust fall.” There’s a reason they don’t call it a “belief fall.” Belief can reside in our heads. Trust is doing it, risking it. Trust is humility, putting ourselves in the hand of another. Trust requires something of us that belief doesn’t.
When God promises Abraham that he will have more offspring than the stars in the sky, translations of the next verse conventionally say that Abraham “believed” God. (Genesis 15:6) “Believe” isn’t the right word there. “Trust” is. The Hebrew word is the same one we get “amen” from. “Amen” is not a social cue that grace is finished and it’s time to eat. It is the final word in the prayer: we’re done talking now, Lord, and we now move to trust. God promised an old man a lot of kids. Abraham trusted God to come through. That is way harder than believing. Believing has wiggle room. Trusting doesn’t.
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