I love a good thunderstorm! Sure, storms make my body sore, but they comfort my soul. They remind me of how powerful God is. Are you in a place where you need to be reminded of the power and might of the Lord? This week, I was reminded as I read in the book of Job. The book of Job begins with God asking Satan if he has noticed Job and what a righteous man he is. Satan replies that he is only righteous because God has blessed him. Satan was sure that if he was allowed to take away Job’s blessings, Job would curse God. God allows Satan to do whatever he wanted to Job and his family, but he had to spare Job’s life. In the chapters that follow we see Job’s children killed, his livestock killed, his wealth taken away, and his body afflicted. His friends come to comfort him, but end up accusing him of sin that was invoking God’s wrath.
Job suffered more than most of us can imagine, yet he did not curse God. Job was honest with God; he cried out to Him. Like many of us, he wanted to know why. At the end of the book, God finally speaks to Job. Job 38:1-30 (The Message) reads:
And now, finally, God answered Job from the eye of a violent storm. He said:
“Why do you confuse the issue? Why do you talk without knowing what you’re talking about?
Pull yourself together, Job! Up on your feet! Stand tall! I have some questions for you, and I want some straight answers. Where were you when I created the earth? Tell me, since you know so much! Who decided on its size? Certainly you’ll know that! Who came up with the blueprints and measurements? How was its foundation poured, and who set the cornerstone, while the morning stars sang in chorus and all the angels shouted praise?
And who took charge of the ocean when it gushed forth like a baby from the womb? That was Me! I wrapped it in soft clouds, and tucked it in safely at night. Then I made a playpen for it, a strong playpen so it couldn’t run loose, and said, ‘Stay here, this is your place. Your wild tantrums are confined to this place.’
And have you ever ordered Morning, ‘Get up!’ and told Dawn, ‘Get to work!’ so you could seize Earth like a blanket and shake out the wicked like cockroaches? As the sun brings everything to light, brings out all the colors and shapes, the cover of darkness is snatched from the wicked--
they’re caught in the very act!
Have you ever gotten to the true bottom of things, explored the labyrinthine caves of deep ocean? Do you know the first thing about death? Do you have one clue regarding death’s dark mysteries? And do you have any idea how large this earth is? Speak up if you have even the beginning of an answer.
Do you know where Light comes from and where Darkness lives so you can take them by the hand and lead them home when they get lost? Why, of course you know that. You've known them all your life, grown up in the same neighborhood with them!
Have you ever traveled to where snow is made, seen the vault where hail is stockpiled, the arsenals of hail and snow that I keep in readiness for times of trouble and battle and war? Can you find your way to where lightning is launched or to the place from which the wind blows? Who do you suppose carves canyons for the downpours of rain, and charts the route of thunderstorms
that bring water to unvisited fields, deserts no one ever lays eyes on, drenching the useless wastelands so they’re carpeted with wildflowers and grass? And who do you think is the father of rain and dew, the mother of ice and frost? You don’t for a minute imagine these marvels of weather just happen, do you?
Job answered God:
“I’m convinced: You can do anything and everything. Nothing and no one can upset Your plans.
You asked, ‘Who is this muddying the water, ignorantly confusing the issue, second-guessing My purposes?’ I admit it. I was the one. I babbled on about things far beyond me, made small talk about wonders way over my head. You told me, ‘Listen, and let Me do the talking. Let Me ask the questions. You give the answers.’ I admit I once lived by rumors of You; now I have it all firsthand—from my own eyes and ears! I’m sorry—forgive me. I’ll never do that again, I promise! I’ll never again live on crusts of hearsay, crumbs of rumor.”
-Job 42:1-6, The Message