Monday, April 15, 2013

trusting a God Who is not always obvious

But he is unchangeable, and who can turn him back? What he desires, that he does. For he will complete what he appoints for me, and many such things are in his mind.
Job 23:13-14

I really believe that Job's experience with God is much the same as what I experience today. His is an ancient understanding with contemporary concurrence. There are things that Job says here that resonate with me right now. There is an intense longing for a God that he believes, but cannot see (Job 23:3). There is an assurance and conviction that God cares for him individually (Job 23:6). There is an awareness and respect for God as ultimate judge of everyone (Job 23:7).

Interestingly, Job struggles with the hiddenness of God, a theological conundrum I often find myself puzzling through as well (Job 23:8-9). If God loves me, why does He seem to delight in hide and seek? The answer is bound up both in the character of God and in the nature of faith. I see within Job a trust in God's power and love. And then there is an unflinching confident faith. It is really all that Job has left, and despite the fact that his wife and closest friends have tried to argue him out of it, Job maintains his trust in a good God Who knows Him and will make even of his present pain something immeasurably precious (Job 23:10). He is confident this trial will bring out of him the best. He will come forth as gold.

Part of Job's capacity for staying true to his faith in God is his personal knowledge that to his very best, he has kept God's commands and treasures God's Word. And it is that experience that helps Job accept that God is hiding overt answers at the moment. He trusts in an unchanging, omniscient, sovereign God Who knows Job, appoints all Job's experiences, and desires to do things in Job that are His designs. Oh to have Job's unshakable trust in a sovereign God!

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