Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. (Proverbs 3:5,6)
In a service where folk are invited to give their favorite verses, these verses are invariably quoted. I sometimes wonder if those who say them realize that they come out of such a rich vein of truth. We need to remember that these verses are directed to the man who diligently studies the Word of God, to the young man who listens to God's law. It is as Paul wrote to Timothy, "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth" (2 Timothy 2:15). Having studied the Word of God and knowing something about the loving-kindness, the grace, and truth of God — holding on to these things — "trust in Jehovah with all thine heart; and lean not on thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths."
This is a very solemn admonition, yet it offers such wonderful assurance of guidance into a way of peace. What a contrast this is to Proverbs 28:26: "He that trusteth in his own heart is a fool...." On the other hand, it is a wonderful thing to trust in Jehovah with all your heart, to be totally committed to Him. Total commitment to Him is sorely needed in our day.
I find myself coming back to this again and again. I may be in an airport and learn that the time of my flight has been changed or delayed by stormy weather. I generally go over to a corner of the airport and say, "Lord, I want to trust You with all my heart. Now just help me to sit down here and rest in You." That's when I need Him. I go to the window and look at the sky, and I make a prognostication. But He says to me, "Don't lean on your own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Me, and I shall direct thy paths." He has led me through life.
I must confess to you that I didn't trust Him like that until I had cancer. I took every day just as it came. Shakespeare, in Act IV of Julius Caesar, said: "There is a tide in the affairs of men, which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune." That was the way I took life. I don't take it that way anymore. Every time I come to a new day, I like to go and look up at the sky and say, "Lord, thank You for bringing me to a new day." It may be a gloomy day or a bright day, whatever the day, I thank Him. "In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." It took me a long time to learn what that meant in life.
Remember that the Lord Jesus, in the Sermon on the Mount, said, "If therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light" (Matthew 6:22). That is an amazing thing. If you have committed yourself to God and you are going down a certain path, doing a certain thing, it is amazing how everything else drops into place. Then your whole body is full of light. Your whole life is full of light at that time.
—From Edited Messages on Proverbs by Dr. J. Vernon McGee