Study from God’s Word… Job, Chapters 8 – 10 … Passage for Reflection: Job 9: 14 – 15 … NIV 14 "How then can I dispute with him? How can I find words to argue with him? 15 Though I were innocent, I could not answer him; I could only plead with my Judge for mercy.
My Journal for Today: The title for today’s devotional from Dr. LaGard Smith comes from the old 60s song by Jim Croce; and it gives a pretty clear reference to the way Job must’ve felt as he described his dilemma to his second “friend,” Bildad, the Shuhite. And also in Job’s reply to Bildad, he begins his plea to God, feeling very low, which we could certainly understand, given his horrible physical and emotional state. Remember Croce’s song, “You don’t tug on Superman’s cape, and you don’t spit into the wind.”
I like Dr. Smith’s word picture as he compares Job’s feelings of smallness to the image of what we might feel like if we were the size an ant and we’re in the hands of someone the size of a human. Being the size of an ant in the hands of a human, we’d likely feel totally at the mercy of this giant creature; and we would feel it impossible to plead our case for mercy from the human to refrain from squashing us like the “bug” we know we are.
Have you ever felt about as big as an ant and being in the hands of a God Who seems so big and uncaring? Perhaps you’ve seen an ant on your kitchen floor and squashed him like the bug he is, having invaded your space. And maybe, given your set of circumstances, you image that God may see you like that ant, way too big to hear you; and maybe you feel like you don’t deserve to be in His presence.
As one reads and meditates through Job’s retort to Bildad, as I did this morning, you get the idea that Job felt way too small to plead his case before the God Whom Job dearly loved and the One he had followed so faithfully in his life to that point. But here he is, broken completely, knowing that God is God and could have prevented this from happening; and knowing that he really doesn’t deserve – at least in his estimation – to be where he is.
Ever been there; – or at least emotionally felt that way? Sometimes, because of our circumstances, we feel that God is distant; and because of God’s promises to always be with us, we can’t understand His seeming absence or distance. Well, my friend, those are times when our beliefs are tested, probably beyond the limits of human understanding; and our faith is bent almost to the breaking point (or maybe past that point). These are the times when – if we’re believers in Christ’s sacrifice as the God-man and we believe that God’s word is ALL COMPLETELY TRUE – our understanding and belief in passages like Romans 8 or Ephesians 1 is tested to the human limits of understanding. Do we really believe what the Psalmist wrote in Psalm 116: 1 – 2 [linked]? Does God really [and ALWAYS] want to hear what we have to say? Again I take you back to Romans 8 or Ephesians 1 [each linked for your study]; … does God really care about us that much?
Well, if we believe that 2nd Tim. 3: 16 is true and we hold to the truth that ALL SCRIPTURE is the inspired word of God Himself, then we must conclude that God, though He may SEEM far away, is lovingly always within earshot; and His word must be true that He wants to hear our laments, our pleas, our confusion, and yes, even our anger.
So, if you’re feeling like you’re that ant who’s crawling in the hands of a WAY BIG GOD, cry out to Him. He will not only hear you, He will lovingly listen; and if you’re one of His, He’ll keep you in His loving arms forever. So go ahead, tug on His cape; … and yeah, even spit into the wind.
My Prayer for Today: Lord, You are way too big for me to comprehend You. But I feel Your love; and I’m thankful for Your loving presence. Amen