Trust | The story behind my tattoo

A few weeks ago, my mom called me, and we talked about what we were going to do when she came to visit. She informed me that my aunt was tagging along and that they were going to get tattoos…she then added “you’re gonna get one too right?” Before I could comprehend what she was saying, I immediately responded, “YES!” It wasn’t until later that I realized what I had signed myself up for.

I’ve known for a while that I wanted a tattoo based on my faith — maybe “joy” on my forearm. But when I looked up verses in the Bible about joy, it didn’t hit me like what my own interpretation of joy had been. I wanted something that truly encompassed how I feel about Jesus and how our relationship has been. I tossed around a few ideas, but then got stuck on this word “trust”. Growing up, I’ve always had my “own” definitions of words, and until recently I never realized how wrong I’ve been. In this case, my own interpretation of trust has always been just some word people say in worship about how they look to God for things. I wanted to know what all this word entailed, so naturally, I Googled it. When the definition came up, I stopped in my tracks…



  1. believe in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of

But wait…the definition wasn’t complete. Who/What was I believing in the reliability, truth, ability, and strength of? Who was someone I could depend on to be reliable, truthful, able, and strong? Who was I putting my trust in? This really hit me.

These questions are things that I had been struggling with recently on SEVERAL occasions. I had been trying to control my own life. I was relying on myself, thinking I knew best, thinking I could do it alone, thinking I was strong enough — trying to be my own god and other peoples’ god too.

Many times recently though, God has shown me that only He can be all that (and more).

~ When I first heard back from Clemson, it wasn’t anything close to what I had wanted and planned — what I thought I deserved. I had put so much effort into my studies and extra curriculars. I had been a good girl and had followed the rules…for what? Just to get Bridged?* I was heartbroken and upset with God. I had a hard decision to make — go to Clemson, my dream school, feeling like a failure or go to my second choice where they seemed to be begging me to attend.

With struggle, uncertainty, and insecurity, I accepted my placement into the Bridge Program. I tried to tell myself that it was the same, that I was still going to be a tiger like my parents. I accepted that God was going to use the Bridge program to change my life, but I still didn’t understand why. I was still upset, but felt that He knew what he was doing. (“Even if it’s not exactly how I planned it, I know your ways are higher & your plans are greater” – me, Feb 2018) Little did I know..

A few weeks later, God proved that he could be trusted — that even a little bit of trust in Him can go a long way. On March 12, 2018, I received an email saying…

Dear Belton:

Congratulations! I am excited to be able to extend an opportunity to become a part of the Clemson University freshman class… we have selected a few students (that were Bridge deposit-paid students) and are pleased to offer you a spot in the Fall 2018 freshman class.

…but I didn’t read it like that. When I realized what was going on, all I could see was…


You trusted me with a little, and see what I gave you in return?

Luke 16:10 and Matthew 25:21 danced around in my mind:

“Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much”

“The master was full of praise. ‘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. Let’s celebrate together!'”

God– although he didn’t have to and I wasn’t expecting it– gave me what I had always dreamed…I just had to give it up to him first.

If God had skipped the “Bridge part”, I never would have trusted him nor really seen how He is the sole one in charge–the one who is reliable, true, able, and strong. I would have been excited to go to Clemson, attributing the blessing to myself and my own accomplishments. God showed me that He needs to be the one I trust in — the one I rely on for truth and strength, blessings and accomplishments. It can’t be me, and I cant be Him.

Over and over, he has proven himself to be the only one I can trust and put my hope in. He is the only one who can take suffering — that I can’t just keep it to myself and think I can be Him. Only He can heal the hurting, and only He can fill the desires of your heart.

So, you see, this is my reminder. Of where trusting God has led me and where it will lead me if I continue to believe in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of…the Lord. If I continue to…

Trust in the Lord

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart;
do not depend on your own understanding.
Seek his will in all you do,
and he will show you which path to take”

– Proverbs 3:5-6

“But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in Him…”

– Jeremiah 17:7

“Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart”

– Psalm 37:4

Special thanks to my aunt Brooke who wrote this for me ❤

* I have nothing against the Bridge Program and love all the amazing people in it

One thought on “Trust | The story behind my tattoo

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s