Thursday, December 22
Growing up and being the youngest of four, I went with my mom a lot of places. One of the places I most accompanied her was the grocery store. Candy was a rarity in my family (except for holidays), so when I reached the checkout and saw the limitless amounts awaiting there, I would start asking if I could have some. On occasion, I would get my wish granted. On other occasions, my mom would say, “I’m sorry, but we don’t have the money for that.” I would quickly appeal by telling my mother, “You can just write a check, then.” “It doesn’t work like that,” she would respond.
My logic: I want candy: Mom has checks: I get candy.
Reality: I want candy; Mom has checks: money in bank account: I get candy
For 37 Chapters, Job has been trying to make sense of what is happening. He has been to hell and back, but has remained faithful. He sees his situation, and he sees God, and he wants God to “write a check”.
His logic: God is love: He has the power to take this away: I will not suffer
Reality: God is love: He has the power to take this away: Every act of a holy and loving God is to bring me into His kingdom: I will not suffer (Rom 8:28)
God’s plan is eternal. It is wrought in creation and sanctified with the blood of Jesus Christ. It is fashioned from His desire that all men should be saved, and none should perish (2 Pet 3:9). A glimpse into the depths of God’s plan begins in His rebuttal to Job:
“Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me, if you understand. Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it? On what were its footings set, or who laid its cornerstone (WOW – Eph 2:20; Psa 118:22) while the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy?” – Job 38:4-7
Suffering, pain, and death are the direct and indirect results of sin, not part of God’s design. Does God save us from suffering? Yes, eternally and sometimes temporarily, but we should never forget he offers comfort, peace, hope, love, and joy in the midst of every circumstance. Every action God takes is not to save a fleeting life, but to give an eternal one. While there is nothing wrong with asking God to “write a check”, keep close to your heart the plan which he has made and paid.