Wednesday, August 27, 2014

inadequate questions

Is not your fear of God your confidence,

and the integrity of your ways your hope?

Job 4:6

This question was asked in an honest attempt to relieve suffering. But questions may not provide comfort. They may only make our response to pain all the more intense. Questions may just grow more questions. 

For Job to answer "yes" to this question in his deepest losses and pain would not have given much comfort. Of course God is our confidence and our hope. You may believe that with all your heart and still suffer. That fact would not change that Job had lost all his children in a gruesome natural disaster or that he lost all his wealth through robbery and plunder, or that he lost his health through a debilitating and loathsome disease. 

It is better in life's pains to hold to God than to hold to mere theology. By that I mean that the explanations of the questions posed in theology aren't nearly as personally rich and rewarding as just knowing a very real moment of God's sovereign care and love. Job finally evens out spiritually and emotionally at the end of the story, not because he was bombarded by well-intentioned yet often accusatory theology from his friends, but because GOD CAME TO HIM PERSONALLY.

Knowing that personal encounter is more comforting that just knowing facts about the God I worship gives me perspective. It goes deeper than any attempt at obeying God's commands with even the very best integrity I can muster. Knowing God personally gives real hope and healing. When God comes in a whirlwind, all theology is remade, relearned, confirmed, and established as fact.

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