Chapter 3: Of Trust in God (click to read)
Having come to an understanding that I am unable to save myself, and that if I should trust in myself I will find my life built on a foundation of sand, Dom Lorenzo then finds for us our salvation! We have a rescuer in God! Since I am no longer going to trust in myself for anything, I can now trust in God for everything! “For as we, who are nothing, can look for nothing from ourselves but falls, and therefore should utterly distrust ourselves, so from our Lord may we assuredly expect complete victory in every conflict. … let us arm ourselves with a lively confidence in Him.”
Having given us four ways of distrust of self, he now gives us four ways of trust in God:
2) look with Faith at all His abilities to do this.
3) look to the promises of Scripture.
4) in any situation, recognize weakness, look to God for help.
Very big questions will come up as we look at this process Dom Lorenzo is placing before us: Why this distrust? Why this order? What’s going on here?
He anticipates, and responds: “Unless you observe this order, though you may seem to yourself to be doing all things in reliance upon God, you will too often find yourself mistaken; for so common is a presumptuous self-confidence, and so subtle are the forms it assumes, that it lurks almost always even under an imagined self-distrust and fancied confidence in God.” “To avoid presumption as much as possible, and in order that all your works may be wrought in distrust of self and trust in God, the consideration of your own weakness must precede the consideration of God’s omnipotence; and both together must precede all your actions.”
Chapter 4: How a Man May Know Whether He is Active in Self-distrust and Trust in God