Trust in the Lord with all Your Heart


I grew up in a good home in the Southern New England town of Newington, CT. Most of my life, I have had it good! For the most part, I’ve worked for good companies with good managers. God allowed me to marry a wonderful wife and have 2 wonderful sons.

Has life always been great? Not always: I have had my share of troubles. For the most part, Linda and I have prayed and found the Lord to be kind and gracious to us. He has helped us through some pretty tight spots including a failing marriage! I have never had any problems with any kind of fear or stress. You would think that after being so sheltered that I would be secure. But, recently, I found out that I am susceptible to fear, stress and depression that I never thought possible.

In Holland, Massachusetts as we were in the final stages of moving to Texas, I was in the “poor me” syndrome mostly due to the pressures that come with moving in general. I was experiencing depression and fear of what would happen to us next. The Lord had called us to move to Texas. We had to leave a good job and a church we loved and where we felt loved. So, I went to our rented motor home in the parking lot of our church to sulk.

The Lord had to speak to me. He said so clearly, “YOU BE HAPPY!” It was like somebody hit me in the head with a two by four! That’s all He had to say: I knew what He meant! As people were gathering for the next service, I got up and immediately went into the church and found somebody to pray for. I was so amazed at what happened next. I became happy! I was no longer thinking of myself.

When we arrived in Texas, I had to find work. It was never a problem in the past. In Texas, it seemed like every door I tried to walk through slammed in my face. After nearly a month of searching and sending out resumes, the Lord led me to a job. You would think that now that I had a job, things would be ok, but I was still battling fear and the stress that comes with it. I was afraid to drive in Dallas traffic, afraid of what might happen at work, afraid to come home, afraid of tomorrow: You name it, I was somehow afraid of it!

At work where I was doing service calls on office equipment, our parent company was micro-managing us to death. It seemed like we just couldn't do things well enough for the parent company managers to be pleased with us. So, as owners, they placed pressure on our managers to drive us ahead. I felt like I was back in grade school being marked for everything I did. We heard statements like, "You did well in this area, but you need to work on that. That's good, but this needs attention and that over there is not good at all." It was enough to drive a person nuts. It seemed at times like we had to break one rule to keep another! For some of us, it was quite the nightmare!

To add to the stress, our parent company had recently been bought by a huge world-wide competitor of the brand of machinery we were dealing with. That meant we suddenly had to learn something else. That placed even more pressure on us. After the acquisition, we had to take prerequisite courses plus learn these new products and still perform our normal jobs! I was so full of fear and stress that one day I sat down in my car and just wept bitterly! I felt trapped by circumstances. What was I going to do? Where could I turn? I could not explain what was happening in my life.

The Lord had to step in and correct me. He caused me to realize that my fear was not only my own but I had also been a victim of our enemy, the devil and my own willingness to listen to his lies. God had to show me that I was thinking about myself too much. In fact, I was so stressed over the things that I thought were injustices in my life that I was actually having mock chest pains. Also, I could not think of and minister to others.

As He began to work on me, an old song came to mind: “Make me a servant, humble and meek. Lord, let me lift up those who are weak. And may the prayer of my heart always be: Make me a servant today.” (©1982 Maranatha! Music, Words and Music by Kelly Willard) God also showed me that I had to spend more time in His word and depend on HIM to calm me down. Once I did that, the fear and stress left.

Now, I am depending on the Lord to help me each day! I had to do these verses in Proverbs 3:5-6 "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not unto your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths!"

I may not know what's going to happen next week, tomorrow or even in the next five minutes. One thing I DO know: God is my refuge and strength and in Him I will trust! Blessings!!

Fred Roth

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