January 16

Job 38-39

“Then the Lord answered Job out of the storm.” The thing about reading words is that you can’t hear tone of voice. Was God angry? Was He impatient? Was there kindness and concern in His tone? When I started to read these chapters today I was reading them as though God was angry. After all, he spoke out of the storm. But half way through chapter 38 it occurred to me that maybe God was speaking to Job like a concerned Father who pulls his son up on his lap to explain things to him. So I went back and pictured that scene as I read.

I think God might get our attention with the storm, but I think He knows we do our best listening and learning when the storm is over and we can think. Job my son, God says, I’m going to explain to you who I am. You’ve survived a storm. Now listen carefully, son. You have a lot to learn.

As I was reading and thinking about Job sitting on God’s lap, leaning against God’s chest with God’s arms wrapped around him, and with God speaking lovingly in his ear I found myself a little jealous. Who wouldn’t want that for themselves? What about the answers to my questions? But I am reminded that my answers have been lovingly compiled and preserved in the pages of the Bible. God’s Word became flesh. And until I can physically see Him I can spiritually climb onto His lap through the pages of His book.

Am I being treated unfairly? Read about Joseph, Jesus, Paul. Am I grieving over the loss of a loved one? Read about Job, Jesus, Mary and Martha. Does God care about me personally? Read Paul’s letters, get to know Jesus through the gospels.

The accounts of real people in a real world are preserved in these pages and are there to guide and encourage us. The very thoughts of the Creator were transfered to paper and pencil by godly men who allowed God to speak through them. If I want to know God I need only to read what He inspired them to write about Himself.

So I’ll continue to climb up onto His lap each day as I read His Word. Sometimes I’ll be convicted. Sometimes I’ll be chastised. Sometimes I will feel complete joy. But always those arms will tighten around me as I draw closer to Him, as I learn more and more about Him and about myself, and as I allow Him to be the Father He longs to be to me.

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