To Believe Is To Trust


John G. Patton, a missionary to the South Sea Islands, set out to put the Gospel in the native language of the tribe with which he was working. When he came to the word “believe,” he had a difficult time finding a word in the tribe’s language that was a match. He wanted to communicate commitment and trust, but as he talked with the natives, they never could understand just the word he wanted.

One day he was in his house writing and a messenger came in. He had run across the island with a message and was out of breath. There was a big chair in the room, and this native plopped down to catch his breath. He sat for a few minutes and rested.

Patton asked the messenger, “What are you doing? Give me the word.” The messenger gave him the word for what it meant to put your weight in a chair and relax. That’s the word he used in the translation for “believe.”

And that, my friend, is what it means to believe—to quit trying and simply trust in the Lord Jesus. Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “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.”