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The Trust Fall

Gwen Smith

Today’s Truth
But when I am afraid, I will put my trust in you (Psalm 56:3, ESV). 

Friend to Friend
Our arms were braided across each other’s and our hands were locked tightly. As the young girl stood on the tall tree stump above us she looked over her shoulder and saw with her eyes that our formation was tight…that we were ready for her. She heard with her ears that we would catch her…that we would not let her get hurt. Yet the fear that screamed in her head told her not to do it. Not to fall backwards.

Her legs shook and lips quivered. Other campers had gone before her and her cabin mates had successfully caught each one. But this camper hesitated – allowing the looming possibilities of failure and pain to paralyze her from action. The risks just seemed too great.

She trembled.

We encouraged.

She cried.

We encouraged.

Then, finally, with determination in her heart, she took the plunge. She fell straight backwards onto the safety net of our arms. We bent low to the ground giving way to her fall and caught her with cheers of excitement. She did it! As her trembling legs regained their confidence, she stood tall and beamed from ear to ear – realizing that she had faced her fear. Joy was felt from heart to heart as each of us rejoiced with her.

Mission accomplished. Early in the day, we had trekked across the campgrounds to the “Trust Fall station” as a group of counselors and campers who didn’t have a shared experience among us, an unconnected strand of strangers. Now our wooded team-building time had come to an end and we left the trust fall station having bonded deeply as a group of new girlfriends prepared for a fresh journey of fun and adventure.

Each of us took turns at the Trust Fall that day. We all faced a set of scary circumstances and were forced to work through our doubts, tremblings and fears. As a result, we learned valuable lessons and strengthened our relationships.

Since my days of being a camp counselor, I’ve faced many scary life Trust Falls: financial trials, relationship strains, relocations, sick loved ones, and difficult family matters. I’ve trembled and I’ve cried. I’ve been paralyzed by “what ifs” and “whys.” We all go through difficult seasons and trials; times when we want to see the invisible arms of the One who says He will catch us; times when we are afraid to fall into them.

Wherever we go and whatever we face, God is with us – yesterday, today and forever. He bids us to live by faith, not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7). He wants us to trust Him. He catches us when we Trust Fall, when we live by faith. And to encourage us along the way He spurs us on by sending a cloud of witnesses who testify of His faithfulness. “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us”  (Hebrews 12:1, NIV).

Today, whether you identify with the shaky young camper on the Trust Fall stump or with the cabin mates who were filled with encouragement for another, God wants you to trust Him…right where you are. It might be scary. Tears might be shed. But God is faithful and can be trusted.

Like the Psalmist, let’s choose to say, “But when I am afraid, I will put my trust in you. I praise God for what he has promised. I trust in God, so why should I be afraid?” (Psalm 56:3-4, ESV)

When we Trust Fall from our struggles into the faithful arms of God, we are freed from the fears that paralyze us. Trust Him today, friend. A cloud of Girlfriend in God witnesses are cheering for you.

Let’s Pray
Dear Lord,

You are good, loving and faithful – and You know exactly what I’m facing. Please take this burden from me. Help me today to fall into a deeper place of trusting you.

In Jesus’ Name I pray,


Now It’s Your Turn
What is God asking you to trust Him in or through? Spend a few moments in prayer over this.

Who has been there for you when you faced scary circumstances?  Consider writing her a note or sending her an e-mail of thanks.

Do you have a friend(s) who seems to be struggling to trust God with her tough places? Maybe God wants you to encourage her or him. Perhaps you could write a letter or share a hug – call and pray with her – bless them with a meal or a plate of brownies. Ask the Lord for ideas!

More From The Girlfriends
Today’s GiG devotion is adapted from Trusting God by Sharon Jaynes, Gwen Smith, & Mary Southerland by permission of Multnomah, division of Random House. This is the perfect book for individual study or for gathering a group of friends in what we call GiG Groups. With impactful devotions, study questions, journal pages, free on-line video intros, and an index of trust-building Scriptures…this book is a resource you’ll refer to time-and-time again.

Love music? Worship through the songs of Uncluttered. This CD is filled with songs that sweep you away from excess ‘life-noise’, this music focuses your heart and mind on the one thing that matters: your relationship with Jesus Christ. Order your copy today from iTunes or from

Got FACEBOOK?? Let’s meet there and do life together on a whole new level:

18 Responses

  1. Danis Boyce says:

    In 2006 I was diagnosed with metastatic melanoma with tumors in my brain, pelvis, thyroid and spots on bones. I was terrified. I had been a Christian since a teenager, but was so anxious and over whelmed with fear I just couldn’t seem to turn it over to God. I asked my Church and Pastor to pray for me and with me. I got a sense of relief, I still had 3 yrs. of surgery, chemo, infusion and treatment ahead but he was there holding my hand. I give Him all the glory for still being here in 2012 when most people in my family died of this disease within 5 yrs.

    • gwen gwen says:

      Wow, friend. That’s a beautiful testimony to God’s goodness and provision! You are surely here to keep shouting His fame. Trusting God can surely be a challenge, but – as you know – is where the hope and strength are found!


  2. Mary says:

    GOD spared me from an ex-husband-to-be our wedding is off….. He had an affair. I need prayers to trust GOD for all of my needs, (as I was not going to have to work, I have no job).

  3. Samantha says:

    Thank you holy spirit for this message… Thank you also GIG… I definitely received this one and needed this for sure! Please God help me put all my trust in you especially when fear arises. I know for a fact that FAITH supercedes fear…. That’s whats up. Received in the heart for sure! Thanks

  4. Marcy says:

    I really needed to hear this today. I am having a hard time staying focused on God. I keep saying I will Trust You Lord, but get distracted. Thank you so much. I want and needed this reminder.

  5. aurea says:

    I need my girl friends in GOD to keep me in there prayer. I’m going thru some thing, feeling sad and confuse don’t know what my next step. I have Faith God will guide me thru it.. God Bless!!

  6. Joy says:

    Thank you for your wonderful message. I have your CD “Uncluttered.” It gives me much comfort. I also have recently read your book broken into beautiful. I am currently reading Joyce Meyer’s updated book of “Battlefield of the Mind.” I have always struggled with self esteem. Many people do not see that in me as I hide it well. We have had many trials & tribulations over the years while raising a large family who are now grown with children of their own. I have had to make myself to go back to school & stretch myself in the work world to bring in extra income as my husband never made much. Since he is older and is close to retirement I recently look on another challenge over 3 months ago. It has been a trying time. I mostly have felt that I took on more than I was capable of but I could not let anyone see that I felt that way causing much inner stress. My new employer has been extremely tough with imposing many long work hours and even on call and work from home. God has given me the strength to keep going. He has spoken to me through your messages telling me that I am capable and that I should not let them scare me off. I believe I am there for a reason besides the money. I get very worn out, but God gives me the strength one day at a time. My boss recently said “I don’t know how you made it through the last 90 days, but we will hold to our promise to raise your pay.” Funny thing is that she said it in a confused,angry way as if she really did not want to. I am not strong enough, but God is. God has my back and that is what they don’t get. She cannot figure out what keeps me going. I am not superwomen, and fall short in many ways but always show up and always do my best. They could let me go, bu they do not I believe because God is in control. The industry I work in can be very ruthless and cold hearted. I pray that God softens their hearts & that they let God in. If they ever do let me go it will not break me because I have been broken into Beautiful. Even though they could hurt my finances they cannot take away by faith in our awesome,loving God. I look over the years & see many, many miracles and even reasons why certain things happened. Your ministry has been such a blessing to me. When I feel weak, people like yourself remind me of what I already have in Christ. We all feel weak at times and even broken but not faithless; just in need of reminders. I will keep going until God wants me somewhere else. Thank you so much for all the wonderful reminders of God’s Grace. Pray for me though as it does continue to be a daily struggle. I am praying to get past that feeling or that God will provide another way where there seems to be no way. God Bless!

    • gwen gwen says:

      Joy –

      What a beautiful name and what a beautiful story of God’s goodness and strength. Thanks for sharing! Sounds like the Lord has just given you a fresh mission field. ;) Go in His name, His strength, His grace and His beauty… and keep pressing on, friend!

      Trust-falling with you –

  7. Hi Gwen,

    While I have really enjoyed today bible i must say that i am having. Please pray for me i am having alot of trust issues with god. I told him today that i do not know how to truly fall in love with him, or how to make him my lord or how to fall madly in love with him. please help me. My life is falling apart Thanks again for listening.



  8. Belinda says:

    Thank you for this devotional. I fall into doubt and worry with my son. God has continously carried and sustained me. Today started to turn that way. I said I don’t know if I’m strong enough I’m such a weak mother. I hadn’t read this devotional until today, when I started to struggle. The words were perfect, to trust him. He is so precious.
    May he continue to BlessYou to send these words at the most needed moments.

    • gwen gwen says:

      I love the way the LORD allows us to “come upon encouragement” at just the right times! Such a reminder that HE is completely trustworthy and has your back, girlfriend! :)

  9. Miranda says:

    “But when I’m afraid, I will put my trust in you. I praise God for what he has promised. I trust in God, so why should I be afraid.” (Psalms 56:3-4)

    Why should I be afraid? When I know God is there watching over me and taking care of me. Why should I worry when I know there is someone who is ready to listen at any time.

    Hi Gwen,
    My mom sent me a couple of your devotions in an email and this one really reached out to me because of what I am going through. The verse from Psalms really speaks to me and I know that God will always be there for me. I am only 17 but I have grown up in a church for a long time and it wasn’t until about 2 years ago that I really fell away from God. I am having some struggles and this devotion really helped. I know that God will always be there for me and he is always watching over me. I trust in Him and always will. He has helped me so much in my time of need, and now I wonder why I ever stopped trusting him.

    I have realized that in the times that we need Him he is always there, but why don’t we do the same for him? When we aren’t going through hardships why is that always the time that we leave or stop following, someday I hope my faith was as strong as it was but I also hope that it will be stronger!
    Thanks for your inspiring and healing message Gwen!

    • gwen gwen says:


      What a blessing to hear from you and the hear about how the LORD is stirring your heart to trust Him more. Awesome. SO glad you are taking steps toward His heart again. That’s where the peace and strength is, friend.

      Warmly in Grace,

  10. Jessica says:


    I am new to your devotionals and found exactly what I needed to hear today. From tiny things like laundry, work issues, and kid squabbles to seemingly huge things like illness, money, and family troubles it is easy to forget to simply trust in Him. We are never strong enough alone but His grace is sufficient. Thanks for reminding me that Christ is my Trust Fall. :)

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