Who God is, what God isn’t…

A few thoughts I’d like to share after my daily chair time.  I know I’ve mentioned it before but it’s a powerful time to read through the Bible, learn more about who God is but also who He isn’t.  I’ve been working through the book of Job, and man is it a tough read.  It’s also another book that’s so rich, and so important.  Like all of us, Job has been blessed by God with wealth and a large family.  He’s well-known and respected, so not surprisingly he gets the attention of Satan.

John 10:10  “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”

Satan began taunting God, trying to convince Him that His servant Job would turn against God once things went terribly-horribly-awfully bad.  So God gives Satan the go-ahead to do as he pleases, just so long as Job isn’t killed.  The next two chapters we see Job lose all of his earthly wealth, his children and to be afflicted by painful sores.  Even through that and some humiliation, he remained steadfast even when his wife encouraged him to curse God for their suffering.

Job 2:10 Job answered, “You sound like one of those fools on the street corner! How can we accept all the good things that God gives us and not accept the problems?” So even after all that happened to Job, he did not sin. He did not accuse God of doing anything wrong.

How true, for me at least, that I’ll take the good and praise God for them but forget that trials of all kinds are still from God.  So instead of cursing God what Job did was continue talking to God and ask for the opportunity to be put on trial for his sins.  Though he had lived a life that God Himself described as blameless, and surely others also saw him similarly, what he wanted was to understand more.  It doesn’t seem to make sense from Job’s standpoint why he should be punished in the way he was, and yet he doesn’t accuse God of wrongdoing, even though he doesn’t understand why God was treating him this way.  Even in the way he speaks with God, he isn’t necessarily sinning, though admittedly he’s asking tough questions of God and doesn’t see the big plan.  Job wants to understand, and would be happy to die but he doesn’t accuse God of wrongdoing.

We all get in these places, I’ll speak for myself that things happen and I question the plan.  I get angry and I wonder why I’m here, and why these trials come my way and for so many others?  How many are displaced by war and famine?  How many homes are split and broken?  How many people are killed in our city?

Job 7: 1-5

“Do not mortals have hard service on earth?
Are not their days like those of hired laborers?
Like a slave longing for the evening shadows,
or a hired laborer waiting to be paid,
so I have been allotted months of futility,
and nights of misery have been assigned to me.
When I lie down I think, ‘How long before I get up?’
The night drags on, and I toss and turn until dawn.
My body is clothed with worms and scabs,
my skin is broken and festering.

We’ll have stretches where it doesn’t seem like the sun will ever come out, or that we’ll find favor in God’s eyes.  So will we give in to sin in those dark times?  If we do, we’ve just handed Satan victory and in doing so we’ve made God wrong.  I definitely wasn’t like Job, I gave in to sin.  In essence I told God that He was wrong and I (and Satan) in turn had it right.  I sought the comforts of things that not only don’t honor a Father that created me and had me in mind when he gave birth to everything we see and don’t see.  At the end of the chapter God reminds Job of all of He’s done, and challenges Job if it was him who created the world.  He uses 4 chapters to lay out just some of the wonders He created, none of which Job can lay claim to.  God then goes on to restore Job, and bless him in even greater ways than he had been previously.

Just because we don’t have God’s heavenly perspective of our life, a roadmap or a battle-plan doesn’t mean there isn’t one.  There’s no Wiki-page for my life that I can consult to gain the understanding I carve so many times, it has however already been written and God is the author of it.

Grace and peace be yours in abundance

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