Solomon who had found God to be worthy of being trusted is advising his son to live a life of trust in Yahweh.
“The word translated ‘trust’ in verse 5 means ‘to lie helpless, facedown.’ It pictures a servant waiting for the master’s command in readiness to obey, or a defeated soldier yielding himself to the conquering general.” (Wiersbe).
To lean is to incline, deviate or bend from a vertical position. To lean is to rely on.
Our natural inclination is to lean or rely on what we are used to, to our own ways and thinking. But as children of God we are to incline our heart away from our own standards, our stubborn ways and to lean or incline toward the Lord and His Word. We are not to go by what we feel like doing or what we think is best. No! Much as we would like to believe so, you and I do not know what is best for us. God alone knows what’s best for us. And so, we are to trust God.
And yet, if trust in God is to be true, it must be complete.
And that means that we trust Him not just once in a way, or for certain issues. We are to trust the Lord for every need, big or small. We trust in Him in the easy matters and in the not-so-easy matters. This verse also reminds us to trust in the Lord with all our hearts. That means we can’t say we trust Him and then do our own thing. It also means that you and I will not act first and then pray or ask for His help later. We will instead pray, seek His wisdom and guidance in His Word first in every matter. On the other hand, it is not good enough to know what God wants us to do or say. We need to act on it. To take God at His Word and act on it requires submission.
To submit is to accept or yield to the authority or will of a superior force or another person. To trust in God also means we submit to Him and His will. We say yes Lord! We agree with Him. We say, Lord, I will not go by my understanding or inclination, but I will do it your way. I will do as you ask me to.
And when we do, then, He will make our paths straight, He will direct our path. He will lead us to fulfill His will in our lives, into what is right before Him and pleasing to us. When we choose to lean on Him, trust and submit to Him then we can go forward in peace, believing that through His Word, through the leading of the Holy Spirit, through the counsel of others, through godly common sense, and through life circumstances, God will direct our paths.