How can a Christian maintain trust in God when facing unemployment, foreclosure, or bankruptcy?
Losing a job, home, or savings can be devastating. We depend on our income to care for our families and provide for our most basic needs. Regardless of whether the loss was our fault or someone else's fault, unemployment, foreclosure, and bankruptcy can cause Christians to doubt God's promises. While these situations themselves are not sin, they can lead us into sin. Too often we respond with anger by blaming others, hopelessness by giving up, or pride by trying to solve things on our own. A righteous response, however, is to trust God.
The first step towards trust is turning to God. "Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need" (Hebrews 4:16). If we have put our faith in Jesus, we have become God's children (John 1:12) and are given the privilege of coming to God with everything. In the midst of hardship, the Devil attacks us with fear, doubt, and pride. We must not entertain these feelings, but rather remember the promises of God. In His Word God says He will take care of us and He has a plan for us (Matthew 6:25–34; Romans 8:28). Sometimes turning to God requires us to repent of unconfessed sin in our lives. Sin keeps us distanced from God, but when we confess we can trust that He forgives and cleanses us (1 John 1:9).
Another key step towards trust is taking action. Some people stay unemployed or homeless because they are lazy and do not make any effort to change their circumstances. Others are proud and not willing to humble themselves and take a lower status job than their previous one. Although we cannot earn our way to eternal life, God did create us to work (Genesis 2:15; Proverbs 12:24; Ephesians 2:10). He provided each individual with the skills necessary to both provide for our families and make a difference for His kingdom. It is important to remember, though, that God does not want us to do this on our own. We need to rely on Him to help us in this process. This may include accepting help from other people, whether it be money, a part time job, or a place to stay. We should not take advantage of others, but use their help to get back on our feet and be willing to offer the same help to others in the future.
A final step towards trust is giving thanks to God. When we believe in His promises and take action based on that belief, we will begin to see the bigger picture. God blesses us through our hardships. He uses our trials to strengthen our faith in Him. They teach us to focus on our families rather than our material wealth. They also serve to remind us that this life and world are only temporary. Our real treasure is in heaven (Matthew 6:19–21). Job, who suffered far more than most, said, "Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked shall I return. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD" (Job 1:21). No matter our circumstances we must always praise God because He is worthy and rejoice in God because He is enough.
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