Because of the miraculous signs Jesus did in Jerusalem at the Passover celebration, many began to trust in him. But Jesus didn’t trust them, because he knew human nature. No one needed to tell him what mankind is really like. John 2:23–25, NLT
I tromped backstage at the theater where I’d been working for months. As I made my way to the dressing room to prepare for the evening’s performance, a few conversations broke off. Other actors didn’t meet my eyes when I offered a cheerful, “Hello.”
I shrugged and got into costume, trying to ignore the whispers and sideways glances. After the curtain call, when everyone else had left for the night, one of my friends walked out with me. “You really don’t know?”
“What’s going on? People are acting so weird.”
She sighed and told me that one of the trusted staff members had been saying things about me. Untrue, hurtful, insulting things. Now rumors were burning up the backstage.
Shock drained the blood from my face. The gossip was ridiculous, and I knew friends would eventually see the truth. What hurt so badly was that a trusted colleague would do this to me—smirking and spreading lies that had no purpose but to wound.
That night, I cried over my Bible asking God to help me figure out how to deal with this betrayal. He led me to this verse in John—an odd little verse I’d never noticed before.
I shook my head as I read. Doesn’t love expect the best? Isn’t trust the default attitude to offer? Gently, God showed me that love was not the same as naïveté. Jesus didn’t collapse in shock and disillusionment when He saw the thoughtless and sometimes cruel choices people made, because He knew human nature. He carefully chose where to put His trust. He also knew the difference between those who only befriended Him for what they could get out of Him, versus true followers. Somehow, acknowledging what Jesus saw—what mankind is like—helped me on the road to forgiveness and deeper wisdom in where I placed my trust.
FAITH STEP: Think about ways to focus more trust on Jesus and a little less dependence on other people.
Contributed by Sharon Hinck