ARE YOU TRUSTWORTHY?
Luke 16:10 NIV
Whoever can be trusted with a very little can also be trusted with very much.
Think for a moment, what would our faith be worth if God was not trustworthy? If God did not keep his word, if God constantly vacillated, or failed us time and time again, our faith would be useless. We’d continually be off balance, insecure, uncertain, in a constant state of stress and anxiety. If God proved untrustworthy time and time again, it would eventually destroy our faith, making our Christianity useless.
Being trustworthy is the most vital ingredient to a strong, healthy, lasting marriage. You have to know, you must be convinced, you can trust your spouse. I am reminded of this in the wonderful description of the Proverbs 31 woman — The heart of her husband trusts in her completely!
Proverbs again reminds us — Many a man proclaims his own loyalty but who can find a trustworthy man? Speaking from personal experience, the majority of people I’ve known proved to be untrustworthy.
There is no single greater attribute in a person than whether or not they are trustworthy.
This is the most significant issue of our times, with our politicians, our government, and our important institutions. They have most often failed miserably to be trustworthy. As a result we have tremendous acrimony, uncertainty, and a serious breakdown of respect and confidence in our leaders, our courts, and our government agencies—even our religious institutions. We’ve endured one lie after another, and broken promises time and time again.
I see this misconception in marriages all the time. People think love is the most important ingredient, but it’s not. It’s trust. Do you keep your word to each other? Can I trust you with my secrets? Can I trust you with my feelings? Can I trust you to do what I ask you to do, or instruct you as my wife to do? Can I trust you with our money? Can I trust you to live within our budget? Can I trust you to limit your smartphone use every day, and not spend multiple hours a day on your smartphone or social media? Can I trust you to follow through on the things that need to be done around the house? Can I trust you to be compassionate with my hurts and my sufferings? Can I trust you to keep your affections just for me? Can I trust you not to gossip and slander me behind my back? The list goes on and on.
As a leader, a pastor, a father, a husband, and a man, I know the single most important thing about me is: Can people trust me? I must be trustworthy.
Here are several vital ways to build trust in your marriage.
Make a personal commitment to do whatever it takes to be a trustworthy man or woman. Strive to imitate God in his trustworthiness.
Keep your word, fulfill your promises. If for some reason beyond your control that becomes impossible, communicate it quickly and carefully explain why.
Apologize, humbly acknowledge to your spouse when you’ve failed or sinned against them. This is absolutely essential. All of us will at times fail. We will sin against our spouse. You will never regain your spouse’s confidence and trust if you do not admit you were wrong, apologize to them, ask their forgiveness, then strive to do better, to excel still more.
Little things are a big deal. They matter. Little things done over and over again demonstrate to your spouse they can trust you or they can’t. When I faithfully empty the trash. When I keep my wife’s van full of gas. When year after year I keep the license tabs current on her car. When I see the toilet paper is out and I put a roll on it for her. When I’m up before dawn shoveling the driveway of snow. When I consistently keep the things in the cupboards we need to live, this proves to her, in these very small things, I can trust my husband. Wives, when you control your mouth, when you watch your words, when you keep his confidences, when you live within the means he is able to provide, when you have supper ready on time, when you honor his simple requests, when you follow his leadership, this proves to him in these vitally important ways, I can trust my wife.
Tell the truth. Do not tell lies. Be factual and accurate in the things you communicate, or portray. When you distort or misrepresent things, you destroy trust.
Pray with your wife every day. This instills great confidence in her that you are truly a God trusting man, a humble man. This will instill greater confidence and trust in her heart towards you.
Do your words, advice, counsel and decisions reflect wisdom? In order to be trustworthy we must make wise decisions, offer wise counsel, speak with wise words and concepts. Words, ideas and concepts that reflect godly, biblical wisdom and sound judgement.
You must walk your talk. You must live what you say you believe. Hypocrites will never be trusted. Inconsistency destroys trust.
Your words, plans and actions must produce good fruit.
I cannot overemphasize how important trust is to your marriage. I’ve watched marriages deteriorate and be ruined because time and time again, a spouse failed to be trustworthy, refused to change, refused to acknowledge and own their wrongs, to apologize, and truly repent. I have seen it become that severe. Their destructive behavior made the marriage unsustainable, unworkable and unlivable. Friends, that is what this kind of sin does to a marriage. It ruins the marriage! You cannot have a meaningful, sustainable marriage with a truly untrustworthy spouse.
I can tell you first hand, the greatest blessing in my life is having a wife who’s completely trustworthy. I fully and completely trust Kathy. She is the most discreet woman I have ever known.
When you violate and betray people’s trust over and over again, you destroy institutions, relationships, or businesses. They are no longer viable or sustainable.
Next to honoring and pleasing God, nothing is more important to me than being a trustworthy man.
Here is a simple marriage project. Sit down with your spouse, and humbly ask them, what things could I do to become a more trustworthy husband, or a more trustworthy wife? Then let them answer honestly, or if they need to think about it, they can take the time to write you an email. Don’t do this by texting!
Matthew 25:21 ISV
His master told him, “Well done! Good and trustworthy servant!”
Helping you become a Strong Disciple,
Because of Jesus,
Pastor Mark Darling