Wednesday, August 12, 2009

2009 – Day 223.Aug 12 – Hold Everything Loosely

Passage of the Day: Focus on Job 1: 21 … 20 Then Job arose, tore his robe, and shaved his head; and he fell to the ground and worshiped. 21 And he said: “ Naked I came from my mother’s womb, … And naked shall I return there. …The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; … Blessed be the name of the LORD.” 22 In all this Job did not sin nor charge God with wrong.

My Journal for Today:
Chuck Swindoll indicated that the title he used for today’s devotional, Hold Everything Loosely, could be a summary title for the entire first chapter of the book of Job. As I have studied this chapter with Swindoll these past days, I have been asking and challenging myself with the question, “How would I react if I lost everything, … including our daughters and their families?” Would my kneejerk response be to worship my God, … the One Who has given me all the blessings of this life I lead?

I know what it says in 1st Thes. 5: 18 and Eph. 5: 20 … that we are exhorted by God’s own word to thank our Lord in all things. But honestly, … I don’t know if I’m mature enough as a Christian to thank my Savior if He chose to take our children suddenly and without any apparently earthly or humanly understandable reason … as He did with Job. I’m afraid my flesh would react by crying out to God, saying something like, “Why, God?! It’s so unfair!!!”

But here I am safely able to read of Job and his worshipful reaction to all this horror brought upon him by Satan and allowed by God; and I can safely see that Job’s response was and is the model of our faith and trust in God. As Swindoll alludes, one can just imagine Satan seeing Job’s response to all the calamity he had wrought upon Job and having to admit to God, “Well, You were right, this man Job was more dedicated to You than I thought he would be.” So, without realizing it, Job’s response to all the horrible things which transpired was an “in your face” statement to Satan about the sovereignty of our God.

Job honestly and reactively was saying to anyone who observed his witness, “God is in control. He brought us into the world; and only He has the right to take us from it.” As Swindoll very aptly points out, and in his words, "We enter this world with our tiny fists clenched, screaming; but we always leave the world with hands open on our silent chests.” … Wow! What a word picture reminding us of the need to learn in life the ability to hold the valued things loosely, allowing God’s ownership and control to be acknowledged and exercised.

I hope we can all see from this first chapter in Job’s story, that God owns it all; and He can use it for His glory in any way He so chooses. … Hold it loosely, my friends.

My Prayer for Today: Lord, You are God. You gave it to me; and You can take it away. Help me to remember and live by that truth. Amen

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