My One (painful) Word: Trust

Last night found our family playing together on our new Wii, the one I got Kel for Christmas that he almost returned GRE study material (which is crazy if you know Kel.)

Noelle was having a riot boxing on the beginner setting and Caedmon was delighted with the idea that we had created computerized versions of ourselves.

At some point I looked up from my book and remarked to Kel: “We’re past the worst of it I think, we’re on our way up.”

All four of us were engaged happily together in our home, which doesn’t happen often given our recent ministry slump and Caedmon’s nearly two year old fondness for epic tantrums.

But here we were, simply together and happy to boot! (and I don’t want to talk about the fast that it was video games that did it)  It was so lovely that I remarked about it and that remark was so beautiful that Kel spent the entire evening reflecting on it and after I’d drifted off to sleep he wrote me an email thanking me for my optimism.  Wow.

The thing is that lately I haven’t said many things like that, rather I’ve said many things that sound just the opposite of that.

Things like:

“God’s just going to leave us where we are because for some reason he loves to teach us lessons the hard way.”


“If we ever make it back to Michigan I’m going to have to get three waitressing jobs and give up writing just to survive.”

And to be honest, this is the PG-13 version of what I’ve been saying lately.  I’ve been all glass half empty, or emptier.


All these comments and moods are indicative of a deep problem I have kicking around.

I don’t trust God, I don’t trust what he has in store for me.

I don’t trust him with our future, I feel like if it’s going to be any kind of life worth living I’m going to have it force it, do it myself.

And you know what?  I don’t really trust people that much either.  Somewhere dark inside I believe that everyone is going to walk away if I don’t hold up my end of the bargain.

I don’t even trust Kel to make my eggs the right way or not over-salt the veggies.

I’m all crusty and lonely like this, it’s a horrible way to live and so this is my confession.  This is the day where I admit with my head hung low that I don’t trust the God I so often talk about in this space, not really, not completely anyway.

Some days I feel like maybe Christianity is a caste system and we’re … a little bit lower than you.

When you go home for Christmas or your mom takes the kids for date night I wonder why we ended up so alone, why 4 out of 4 of our birth parents died or walked away.

And guys, I thought, I really thought I’d left all of this behind me

I thought that I had left the painful past behind in favor of something sweeter but it turns out that I haven’t.

This this year my one word is trust, just this one simple, one syllable word.  So common on the tongue and yet so hard for me for me to swallow.

I am prayerfully, tearfully going to untangle these knots and ask God’s forgiveness for being such an ungrateful kid.

Because he loves me and he doesn’t owe me anything, this home, these kids, this warm mug of coffee and coconut milk is a gift.

These 1250 square feet would easily house several families in the third world and they would praise God for the blessing of it.

Lord I’m sorry, can you lead me on in this Journey of trust? Forgive me and, just help?  Send books, send prayers, send truth and don’t let me walk away from this journey.


I know you all have words for the year, I’d love to hear about them, to check back with you on them from time to time.  Perhaps you wrote about them?  Will you share with me, can we pray for each other?

Thank you, Thank you, Thank you to Melanie at Only a Breath for the gorgeous, (aqua!) button.  She even redid my when I was so frazzled that I sent her the wrong word.  (wow)

  • Annette Skarin (@carinskarin)

    Squarepeginaroundhole…is my word. I’m trying hard though. Breathe in grace…breathe out squarepeginaroundhole. Faith is my weapon against lies.

    • leannepenny

      Perfect. And you may get the prize for longest word :)

      • Annette Skarin (@carinskarin)

        Yeah, I finally get to win something :-) The only thing I ever won was a pie back in 19–?

        • leannepenny

          Well it’s about time you get a win!

    • agrajag

      I can’t pray for you – because there’s no God to pray to in my world. But I’ll gladly share my word for 2013 with you.


      Even when things seems darkest, there’s light. And even when you think you’re hopelessly lost in the woods, there’s a path. If you’d told me that 15 years ago, I’d not have believe you, today I’m trying to make others believe it, being living proof of that myself.

      • leannepenny

        Thank you for your hope and for sharing your tender heart in this space. I’m so glad that you’re seeing the light and journeying toward healing.

        • agrajag

          My world was very dark in the start of my twenties. I had years I thought I’d not survive. Today, I’m doing embarassingly well, so well that I don’t like talking about it, because I feel like I’m being an arrogant arsehole when I do.

          But I’ve learnt one important thing from it all: no matter how dark things seem, it’s always possible to find the light again.

          These days, I’ve got enough sunshine to share. And that’s the main content of my 2013 word: I’d like to help give some people hope, more than they otherwise would have. Perhaps even help make some dreams come trough.

          We’re from different worlds, different generations, and different continents. That doesn’t matter. I think we could be friends. Time will show.

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