[June 14]--Job’s (non-)reply

Job 42:1-6

For several days Job had been crying out for an audience with the the Lord of the universe, and he finally got one. God overwhelmed him with his majesty, and Job suddenly forgot about all his complaints and accusations. All his pain, his loss, his grief, his anger, his bitterness, his theological questions, all of it was lost in that one moment. When faced with the Lord himself, Job clapped his hand over his mouth.

But there’s an interesting point that I got from Max Lucado in one of his books which I’d like to submit. Verse 5 made an interesting distinction between Job before the experience and Job after the experience. Job had been a godly man: He prayed, he sacrificed and worshiped, and he tried to do the right thing in his lifestyle. I think that it'd be a major stretch to say that he had no relationship with the Lord before all this happened. But there's s a huge difference between hearing about God and meeting him face-to-face. It’s moving beyond prayer to God into the realm of basking in his presence. It’s the difference between reading about Jesus in your Bible and feeling him looking over your shoulder. Just like I’ve never gone through even a fraction of the tragedies of Job, I’ve never been this close to God in my time alone with him either.

And here’s the amazing thing: It was all worth it. Meeting God face-to-face as opposed to hearing about him? Lucado believes--and I agree with him--that if you asked Job if he'd be willing to go through all that suffering all over again, he would do so in a heartbeat, if it ended in the same way. Seeing God face-to-face.

The question then becomes, what's it worth to me? What would I be willing to sacrifice in order to approach my Father and really experience his presence? A little less TV time? A little less sleep? A little nudging out of my comfort zone? That’s probably not the last sacrifice I'd be called upon to make, but it’s a start.

What about you? You’ve read about him, prayed to him, done good things in his name. There’s certainly nothing wrong with that. But what would you be willing to give up in order to move beyond that? Are you ready?

Whatever it takes, Father. If I’m not ready, then please make me ready.

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