Enemies, Trust

Trusting the Untrustworthy

“ When people show you who they are, believe them the first time.” – Maya Angelou

Unfortunately, I’ve often made the mistake of trusting people who never earned it or indeed abused it. I used to date a guy who on the surface was a “nice” guy. He said all of the right things but his actions didn’t convey the same. I let my guard down because of his sweet nothings. Even when I realized that he was all talk, it took me a while to end it. On and off for years, I would let him creep back in, hoping that “this time” things would be different. They never were. Each time, I left the situation drained and wondering how I allowed myself to fall into his trap. The truth of the matter is that I trusted my heart with an untrustworthy person. Actions indeed speak louder than words.

Similarly, Samson continued to give his heart to untrustworthy women. He married women who while professing to love him betrayed him. In Judges 14, Samson gives a riddle to the Philistines “Let me tell you a riddle,” Samson said to them. “If you can give me the answer within the seven days of the feast, I will give you thirty linen garments and thirty sets of clothes. If you can’t tell me the answer, you must give me thirty linen garments and thirty sets of clothes.” (12-13 NIV)

His wife was threatened by the Philistines to obtain the answer. Instead of telling her husband the dilemma, she pressured him day after day until he finally shared with her. Before sunset on the seventh day the men of the town said to him,“What is sweeter than honey? What is stronger than a lion?”Samson said to them,“If you had not plowed with my heifer, you would not have solved my riddle. Judges 14:18 NIV Needless to say, this marriage was over and “the woman from Timnah” was given to one of Samson’s companions.

Just like me, Samson trusted again. He went from a bad situation to worst. Some time later, he fell in love with a woman in the Valley of Sorek whose name was Delilah. The rulers of the Philistines went to her and said, “See if you can lure him into showing you the secret of his great strength and how we can overpower him so we may tie him up and subdue him. Each one of us will give you eleven hundred shekels of silver.” So Delilah said to Samson, “Tell me the secret of your great strength and how you can be tied up and subdued.” Samson answered her, “If anyone ties me with seven fresh bowstrings that have not been dried, I’ll become as weak as any other man.” Then the rulers of the Philistines brought her seven fresh bowstrings that had not been dried, and she tied him with them. With men hidden in the room, she called to him, “Samson, the Philistines are upon you!” But he snapped the bowstrings as easily as a piece of string snaps when it comes close to a flame. So the secret of his strength was not discovered. Then Delilah said to Samson, “You have made a fool of me; you lied to me. Come now, tell me how you can be tied.” Judges 16:4-10 NIV

What has perplexed me throughout the story of Samson and Delilah is that she repeatedly asked Samson the secret to his strength and with each answer he provided, she carried out a plan to strip him of his power. Unfortunately, Samson disobeyed God and after her persistent pressure revealed the secret to his strength. Ultimately, this revelation lead to his death. (Read Judges 16:15-30) If she continuously showed that she would betray him, why would he continue to let his guard down? Love and lust can make you do strange things.

Ladies, often times we find ourselves in very similar circumstances. We continuously trust people who have only abused the very thing that we should guard. I can count friends, boyfriends and family members who were underserving of my trust that I gave so freely. I’ve shed many tears and had many sleepless nights because someone betrayed the trust I shared. After studying Samson, there are several takeaways from the story:

  1. Some people study your power only so they can use it against you
  2. Some things God has for you are not to be shared with others
  3. Be careful of the people who you allow to get close to you
  4. If you don’t learn from a mistake, you’re destined to repeat it
  5. When people reveal themselves to you, believe them

Dear Daddy,

Increase my spirit of discernment so that I do not put my trust in untrustworthy people. Give me the strength to walk cleanly away when it’s time to sever a relationship. God I know that You have gifted in me many things so I pray that You bring me in the presence of people who will only increase my gifts and not detract from them. Open my eyes so that I recognize when I am repeating the same pattern of letting my guard down around people who mean me no good. Let me be someone that people can trust. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Ladies today I EMPOWER you to seek God about relationships, friends and family who you need to disengage. I encourage you to open your eyes and see people for who they are. Do not make excuses for their behavior or how they have treated you. Stop trusting people with your secrets, time, talent and your treasures who have only abused your trust.

Have you repeatedly put your trust in untrustworthy people? How did you stop?

Please help us bless and EMPOWER homeless women and their children as the beginning of a new school year nears!  For more information on how you can donate and help make a difference, please click here http://www.gofundme.com/cfeux8


Chancee` Lundy lives in Washington, DC and is an entrepreneur as she is the co-owner of Nspiregreen, LLC, an environmental consulting firm. She is also a dedicated daughter, sister, friend and community servant. She has used her gift of public speaking to lead workshops across the globe speaking to crowds as large as 10,000 people. Her guiding scriptures this week are Philippians 4:11-13 “Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: everywhere and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengthened me.

Faith, God's Protection, God's Provisons, Growth/Maturity, Inspirational, Trust, Trusting God, Worry

The Source of My Confidence

“…On what are you basing this confidence of yours?…On whom are you depending…?” (2 Kings 18:19-20 NIV)

Ladies, today I challenge you to search your soul and ask yourself: “Where does my confidence come from?  On whom or what do I depend?”  When faced with a challenge, most of us will declare that our confidence is in God, but let’s be honest.  Where does your confidence really lie?  Is it your money (or his)? Your talent?  Your status?  Your appearance?  Your education?  Is it in YOU?

The source of our confidence can usually be traced to the things or people that we first look to when an issue or matter arises.  When your finances, your family, your livelihood, and your beliefs are under attack, where do you look first?  Do you go to your secret closet and seek the Lord or do you call your girlfriends, your money source, or layout your resume`, thinking, “They don’t know me!”  Again, “On what are you basing this confidence of yours? On whom are you depending?”

In Chapter 18 of 2nd Kings, we find that the people of God have their confidence challenged by the King of Assyria.  “Do not let Hezekiah deceive you.  He cannot deliver you from my hand.  Do not let Hezekiah persuade you to trust in the Lord when he says, ‘The Lord will surely deliver us.’” (2 Kings 18:29-30 NIV)  In this passage, Judah is under attack because Hezekiah, the King of Judah, has rebelled against the King of Assyria by continuing to worship God rather than the king.  When Hezekiah hears the king’s challenge, his first response is to go to the temple and to seek Isaiah the prophet (2 Kings 19:1-2). Although afraid, and though he could have easily responded with his own power as king, Hezekiah chooses to make God his source.

Like Hezekiah, as women of God, our confidence must always rest in God.  When things are going well, we must boast in the Lord and recognize that nothing good dwells in us apart from God. (Romans 7:18)  When we are faced with challenges, the same confidence that we have in God must remain with as we learn to endure.  Throughout the Bible, “we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses” who can attest that there is no better source of confidence than our Lord and Savior. (Hebrews 12:1)  We can look to Job, the Hebrew boys, Daniel, Hannah, Ruth, Rahab, and even Hezekiah to find examples of those whose faith and confidence rested in God.  When we examine their lives, we can see that their confidence was not in vain.  They are a testament that when our confidence is in the right place, God always shows up and shows out!

Dear Daddy,

We thank You for being our source of confidence.  Help us to seek You first in all things.  Help us to know that nothing that we have is good unless it is blessed by You.  During both good times and bad, teach us to boast and trust only in You.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Ladies, I EMPOWER you to place your confidence in God.  Know that He never fails.  And when people ask, “On whom do you depend,” proudly respond, “The Lord is the source of my confidence!”

Read a related EmpowerMoment: Blinded by What I See 

Ms. Latasha McCrary is an active member of St. Luke Christian Church in Huntsville, AL where she serves as a Young Adult Facilitator and is training as a Life Skills Coach. She is passionate about the practice of law and views her profession as an extension of her calling to serve. Latasha firmly believes that “Service is the price we pay for the space we occupy” and is grateful for God’s continuing favor evidenced in her life. “By this I know that you favor me, because you have not let my enemies triumph over me.” (Psalms 41:11)

Blessings, Contentment, God's Promises, Gratefulness, Jealously, Patience, Trust, Trusting God

Dear God, What Are You Up To?

Do not fret because of evil men or be envious of those who do wrong. Psalm 37:1 NIV

Let’s have a real conversation; have you ever witnessed people who you knew were not living right being blessed? I am not talking about in the judgmental you are living like I think you should way, but people who confess out of their mouths that they either don’t believe in God or feel that they can live their life anyway they deem fit. They literally tell you, “I do whatever I want” and their lifestyle reflects that.

Now how do you feel when you hear all the absolutely wonderful things that are going on in their lives? Are you just a tad bit envious? Do you want to just have a private sit down with God and go over your resume`? “God remember back three months ago, when I didn’t have a lot of money and I still tithed? Remember when that woman at work talked bad about me and stole a promotion from me, how I prayed that she would be prosperous? Remember that?”

I am currently in a very envious state. I don’t want to admit it but I am. I have been purposely seeking God more, reading the Bible more, attending church, praying…all the things that people say should equal the magical formula of a blessing. You know the Christian math:

Prayer+ Faith =Blessing

Instead my math is looking a bit more like this:

Prayer+ Faith =…wait for it…wait for it…?????

I am still waiting on God for several things in my life. I pray for a good man. I pray for a better car. I pray for healing for a good friend.  Yet, I am still single. My car (although I am grateful for having transportation) is getting costly to repair when it breaks down because they are having trouble finding parts for an older model car. My friend is still dealing with several health challenges.

Truthfully, if I wanted to I could recount every single thing that is going wrong, or things that I am (not) so patiently waiting for God to change, but why would I? When we get into moments where we start to compare our blessings to other people’s blessings we are walking on very treacherous ground.

Then the LORD spoke to Job out of the storm. He said:

“Who is this that obscures my plans with words without knowledge? Brace yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer me.

 Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation?  Tell me, if you understand. Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it?” Job 38:1-5

Ladies, we may never know why God chooses to heal or not heal, to give financial windfalls or withhold, to give you a season or lifetime of singleness. As a woman of God, your task is not to try and figure out why or what God is doing in your life. Your task is to remain faithful, to be steadfast in His Word and cling to Your Father’s Hand. We have a testimony to the unbelievers when we continue to walk in righteous even when it seems like there is no earthly “benefit”. This world is not your home and your wisdom can never compete with your Father’s. When this life ends, who knows what God will reveal to you about your valley times. Maybe someone is watching you in your valley. That person might be hoping to see you succeed so they can believe that God will do the same for them. You rob that person of being encouraged by your efforts when you doubt, complain or even worse when you take certain earthly shortcuts to get what you think you need. The most important thing to remember is that God does everything for our good.

Dear Daddy,

Please keep me from comparing my life with those around me. Keep my hand in Your hands as I continue on this journey.  When I am confused, scared or upset guide me to Your Word that will help strengthen me. Thank You for never leaving me especially at my most vulnerable moments. In Jesus’ Name, Amen! 

Lovely Ladies of God, I EMPOWER you to remain faithful. You did not marry Christ for benefits, you married Him for love and just like in any marriage, there will be hardships. Remember, unlike an earthly marriage, your Husband is perfect; He has perfect wisdom and even more comforting, a perfect Love. 

EmpowerMoments is currently recruiting for new writers. If you are interested, please click here to find out more.

Ms. Renee` N. Chaffin is a single mother who has a heart for helping those less fortunate. She has been active in the non-profit sector, whether through volunteerism or professionally, for the past six years.  She is passionate about sharing the love of God, her testimony and empowering people to discover their true potential that was bestowed on them by King of the Universe. Renee` is currently pursuing a Master’s in Public Administration. While on her pursuit of higher education, she is on a seven year journey to challenge God to do ‘exceedingly and abundantly above all she can imagine’ in seven areas over the next seven years. Check out her journey at http://radical7even.wordpress.com. Her favorite scripture is I Peter 5:6: “Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.”

Assignment, Growth/Maturity, Obedience, Prayer, Self-Control, Speech, Submission/Surrendering, Trust

Can God Trust You?

Not long ago, I found myself asking a crucial question, “Can God trust you?”  This came to mind after calling a friend soliciting prayers for one of our sisters in Christ.  “What’s wrong with asking someone to pray?” you ask.  The problem is this: God revealed the young lady’s need for prayer to me.  No where in the revelation did He ask me to solicit prayer from others or to reveal even the slightest information concerning my sister.

In reflection, I thought about the confidentiality clause at the end of my emails:  

The information transmitted in this email may contain privileged confidential information belonging to the sender.  THIS TRANSMISSION OF PRIVILEGED INFORMATION IS INTENDED TO BE USED ONLY BY THE PERSON OR ENTITY NOTED ABOVE.

Convicted!  God transmitted privileged information to me, for me, and I leaked it to a third party.  It seems like such an innocent thing, because no malice was intended.  Nevertheless, it boils down to good stewardship.  Often we talk about stewardship in the context of finances, but stewardship is the responsibility to manage all the resources that God has given to you in a manner that will bring glory to our Father.  To be a steward is to be an overseer of the things which God has entrusted to you.  

In meditation, God sent me to the story of Eli’s two sons.  Eli was a priest who had two sons that were also priests.  During Eli’s time, the priests served a critical function amongst God’s people.  Their responsibility was to handle very carefully the things of God (Leviticus 22:2 NLT).  The problem, however, is that Eli’s sons dishonored the Lord by mishandling their responsibility.  “Now the sons of Eli were scoundrels who had no respect for the Lord or for their duties as priests.” (1 Samuel 2:12 NLT).  As a result of their dishonor and Eli’s failure to correct the problem, God punished Eli’s entire family.  His sons were killed and God stripped his descendents of the ability to serve as priests (1 Samuel 2:27-31 NLT).

Just as Eli’s sons mishandled their responsibility over the matters of God, we also serve as poor stewards when we fail to properly oversee the information or things that God has entrusted to us.  At times, God provides us with discernment or reveals things to us which are intended only for us.  The information is not revealed for the purpose of inquiry, sharing, or gossip.  If God intended for it to be known to the general public, He could have orchestrated a public announcement.  Since He entrusted it to us, we must be careful to deal with the information in confidence.  God desires that we follow His instructions only.  We should, therefore, treat them as though our lives depended on it (as was the case with Eli’s sons).  Keep in mind that often people are reluctant to open up about their hurt out of fear that they will be exploited.  Don’t let it be said that you created the opportunity for exploitation by mishandling the matters of God.

Dear Daddy,

Forgive me for the times when I have mishandled the responsibility that You have placed upon me.  Help me to be a good steward, to operate in confidence, and to carry out Your instructions only.  Teach me how to be careful so that I don’t exploit my brothers and sisters.  As my responsibility in the Kingdom increases, help me to serve faithfully so that I can hear Your words: “Well done, my good and faithful servant.  You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities.” (Matthew 25:23 NLT) In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Ladies, I EMPOWER you to handle carefully the responsibility which God has entrusted to you.  Be good stewards and understand that, in doing so, you have the potential to bring forth strength and healing for God’s people. 

Read a related EmpowerMoment: Since Much is Demanded

Ms. Latasha McCrary is an active member of St. Luke Christian Church in Huntsville, AL where she serves as a Young Adult Facilitator and is training as a Life Skills Coach. She is passionate about the practice of law and views her profession as an extension of her calling to serve. Latasha firmly believes that “Service is the price we pay for the space we occupy” and is grateful for God’s continuing favor evidenced in her life. “By this I know that you favor me, because you have not let my enemies triumph over me.” (Psalms 41:11)

Encouragement, Forgiveness, God's Love, God's Protection, Honesty/Truth, Inspirational, Sexual Abuse, Spiritual Therapy, Trials, Trust

Touch Me NOT!

They asked me to “play a game” with them. I was no more than four or five and they weren’t much older.  Years later it happened again but on a more frequent basis and with a different person. He was a teenager (almost grown) and I don’t think I was quite out of elementary school. It didn’t feel bad and it was unsolicited but appreciated attention…sort of. Besides I knew what would happen, I went to their house. A few more years passed and a family member tried me as another one looked on while I was sleeping but I stopped them dead in their tracks. By now, I was certain that what was happening wasn’t right and I told on them. My body was nobody’s playground!

Time passed and I moved those memories to a place so deep in my mind that I forgot about them. It wasn’t until I was in my 20’s and my cousin called me to unleash all of the tragic things that happened to her (right under my nose) that I thought about the molestation that occurred in my own life. Her story rocked my world so much because during her traumatic experiences I learned that I was often close by but had no clue. After hearing from her, I felt that my own story was insignificant because “all of that” didn’t happen to me. Although we were both kids, I felt that I was responsible for her safety. Through conversations with other family members and friends I realized that the evil spirit of Touch that I experienced was all too commonplace.

The Bible proclaims that there is “nothing new under the sun” (Ecclesiastes 1:9) and unfortunately that applies to molestation and incest. Consider Tamar, David’s daughter.  Her brother raped her.  Amnon became so obsessed with his sister Tamar that he made himself ill. But when she took it to him to eat, he grabbed her and said, “Come to bed with me, my sister.”

“No, my brother!” she said to him. “Don’t force me! Such a thing should not be done in Israel! Don’t do this wicked thing. What about me? Where could I get rid of my disgrace? But he refused to listen to her, and since he was stronger than she, he raped her.

Her brother Absalom said to her, “Has that Amnon, your brother, been with you? Be quiet for now, my sister; he is your brother. Don’t take this thing to heart.” And Tamar lived in her brother Absalom’s house, a desolate woman. (Read all of II Samuel 13:1-20 NIV)

I would love for this EmpowerMoment to talk about how I overcame and how God brought me through it and have some encouragement for YOU but to do so would misrepresent my true feelings.  Many days I feel like Tamar – desolate not only for myself but for close family members who have suffered worse. As you can see at this point in the story she was basically told to keep quiet about it. Many of the abused suffer in silence. Some days I am absolutely, positively pissed at the perpetrators, the ones who didn’t provide protection and the ones who didn’t make them face punishment. There are days that I sit and sulk about the impact that it has had on me and the other women I know. I am hypersensitive to men being alone with children- even their own. I am constantly suspicious of men’s motives. I don’t like dirty jokes or hearing people refer to their mates as “daddy” and I am leery of male gynecologists. These things bother me in a way that is pretty difficult to express and the surprising thing is these are all things that have only recently begun to come to the surface. There was a time when they didn’t bother me but as I always say “feelings buried alive never die.”

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. Romans 8:35-37 NIV

Since this and other issues have begun to surface, I have started seeing a psychologist. Outwardly I am fine but sometimes my spirit is an emotional wreck. My life is a testament that you do not have to let evil overcome you. Others may use their power to take advantage of you or destroy you but it doesn’t have to end there. God has the last say. I thank Him that I don’t look like what I have been through.  I have never shared this story publicly and only in VERY small private circles but I know that many of us have dealt with it. I pray that God gives you peace of mind, forgiveness for your perpetrator and a spirit of determination to continue to press forward. Whatever that thing is that happened in your childhood, it does not have to negatively impact your destiny. Use it shape your testimony.

Dear Daddy,

Give me comfort and remove any doubt in sharing life’s trials that I have endured. Help me to work through the pain and release the baggage associated with my testimony. Father, let Your angels of protection watch over the children who are currently being abused. Open doors and lead them to safety. Touch all of the women and men who may identify with this message and let them know that their abuse does not have to define them. You are the conductor of our lives and NO WEAPON formed against us shall prosper. It may take us down for a minute but we will not be defeated. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Ladies, today I EMPOWER you to share and to listen. Whether it’s a story of abuse or something else, I encourage you to share your stories of trial and triumph so that others may learn from you and support you. I EMPOWER you to pray for our children and this sexually perverted spirit that is running rampant. Lastly, I EMPOWER you with the knowledge that no matter what you have been through or have to come, it doesn’t define you because you are MORE THAN a conqueror.

Be sure to enter this month’s contest by clicking here.

Ms. Chancee` Lundy currently resides in Atlanta, GA and is a small business co-owner of Nspiregreen, LLC an environmental consulting firm. She is also a dedicated daughter, sister, friend, community servant, and child of God. She is passionate about causes that truly uplift the community. One of her favorite scriptures is Hebrews 11:6: “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.”

Forgiveness, Growth/Maturity, Trust, Trusting God

I Have Trust Issues!

How can I trust something I can’t see?

How am I supposed to let Go and let God?

Who is he/she?

Where will I be if I let this being consume me?

If I give you my heart will you break it?

If I offer you all of me will you take it?

Will you lose interest and discard of me like all the rest?

If temptation smacks you in the face will you pass the test?

Why are you being so nice to me?

Are your intentions pure or tainted?

Will you be good for me, or am I too jaded to see it?

There is no such thing as “good people” anymore so who are you?

What does it feel like to trust someone?

What does it look like to trust God?

How does trust manifest?

Am I really giving God my best?


I admit that I have struggled with these or some form of “trust issues” my whole life.  I experienced the ultimate betrayal early in life.  I do not think I have ever truly trusted since then.  I did not trust my family to protect me; I did not trust anyone’s intentions or actions.  I always waited…waited for somebody to do something to break the trust that I never really gave them in the first place.  I had to act as though I NEVER expected they could do something so deceitful and malicious.  The reality of me is that I trust no one.  Not family, friends, and sometimes GOD.  There I said it.  It’s not that I do not trust God to provide for me or wake me up.  I have difficulty trusting that God will not let my heart or feelings be hurt again.  I must be my own protector, but that is not true. “The Lord is thy keeper: the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand. The sun shall not smite thee by day or by night. The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul.” (Psalm 121:5-7 KJV)

I was wrong.  If I cannot trust anyone else, I can trust the Lord.  It is hard to let go of all the past experiences and hurts that lead you to the place where your “trust issues” start.  Mine began so young that I never knew any other way.  I had to open myself completely to the Lord in order to experience what it means to truly believe in the Lord.  Many of us struggle with some sort of trust issues.  If you are not first able to trust God in every capacity you will not be able to trust in people.  The dictionary defines trust as: “reliance on the integrity, strength, ability, surety, ect, of a person or thing in confidence”. Putting your trust in God is the confidence to know without a doubt that God has your best interest at hand. I had to understand that any heartbreak or pain I may have experienced at the hands of others was designed by God.  I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world “(John 16:33 ESV).  I had to trust that everything that God has allowed to happen to me is with good reason. I am still working through my trust issues with others but I am glad to proclaim that I trust God!

Dear Daddy,

Please allow me to be able to open my heart and mind to others.  I pray that I will be able to see the good in any situation that I may have been through.  I ask that you help me let go and let You take control of my life and all aspects of it. I want to thank You Daddy for trusting me even when I did not trust you. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

I EMPOWER you to move past your trust issues and into your future.  There are good people out there and if you never trust them you will not be able to experience the blessings they may have for your life.  God strategically places people in your life. I EMPOWER you to trust that God knows what He is doing.

Continuing with our BREAST CANCER AWARENESS MONTH celebration, we encourage you to watch Lifetime’s short film series, “Five.”  “Five” is a series of five short films that explore the impact of Breast Cancer on people’s lives. The five films are directed by Jennifer Aniston, Alicia Keys, Demi Moore, Patty Jenkins (“Monster”) and Penelope Spheeris (“Wayne’s World”).  The short films are all titled after their main character – “Charlotte,” “Cheyenne,” “Lili,” “Mia” and “Pearl.” Visit http://www.mylifetime.com/movies/five/video/five to enjoy the films.

Ms. Sherita Shelton currently resides in Nashville, Tennessee.  She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Master’s in Professional Counseling and is currently pursuing her counseling license.  Sherita works as a therapist and case manager for children as well as adults.  She facilitates groups for single women and offers mentoring and individual counseling for her clients.  Sherita’s favorite Bible verse is Proverbs 3:5-6: “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lot not on your own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”