Friday, May 3, 2013

Cry out!

Surely God does not hear an empty cry, nor does the Almighty regard it. How much less when you say that you do not see him, that the case is before him, and you are waiting for him!
Job 35:13-14

Elihu is pretty bold and really quite impetuous. He presumes to speak for God on the matter of they way in which Job presents his complaints. It is really quite an inconsiderate attack on Job. It is totally wrong about God. Elihu is basically saying that Job's words are beyond worthless. His reasoning is this: 1) God does not listen to the raves of sinners against him. They take nothing from God. 2) Job is a sinner who dares to state he has a hard time seeing God at the moment and calls God to come answer his cry. 3) Therefore, Job is worse than a sinner with empty accusations because he dares to ask God to come answer him.

Again, Elihu could not be more wrong. If fact, God will come answer Job very shortly in this book. Elihu's theology makes God out to be an easily insulted thin-skinned tyrant Who responds to our hurting questions with a selfish "How dare you!" And that betrays that Elihu does not know a thing about God's grace and mercy.

The truth is, God wants to hear our cries. He can handle our frustrations. And He does not disappoint, even when we struggle to understand the difficulty we may endure. Some people endure hardship ALL THEIR LIVES! Does that make it impossible for them to trust a good God? Some people will never find the "perfect marriage" that they have idealized. Some people are born with physical challenges that force them to depend on "less than reliable" human beings. Someone may struggle with a physical condition, others with mental difficulties, still more with emotional ups and downs, many with depression or a repeat cycle of "the blues". Can these crowds of people not let God know how much it hurts? Are they just supposed to shut up and pray quietly and smile and pretend nothing is wrong? Of course they should cry out! It is healthy and it makes up a necessary component of their faith.

All of us should cry out to God. Let Him know your hurts. Don't bottle them up. Hiding them away gives opportunity for sin to complicate our hurts. God understands them better than anyone else ever can. And He can bring strength, perspective, and healing in our difficult days.

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