Friday, February 3, 2012

Our Quiet Example

"But if he remains silent, who can condemn him? If he hides his face, who can see him?  Yet he is over individual and nation alike..." (Job 34:29, NIV)

The other morning, as so often happens in my quiet time with the Lord, God opened His word to me in a fresh way.  For quite some time, I have been enjoying a devotional that a friend gave me as a gift, STREAMS IN THE DESERT.  In many of the entries in this wonderful book there are very short quotes of Scripture.  I often try looking up these passages in context, so I can get a broader understanding of what is being said.

The above passage from Job was quoted along with inspiring thoughts on how God provides quiet in the midst of life's raging storms.  But as I dug beyond the abbreviated King James Version quoted, I saw that, on the surface at least, this verse spoke more to God's silence than it did to His calming.

Suddenly, I found myself reflecting on all the times I, like so many of us, experienced the Lord's silence when I felt like I needed to hear from Him the most.  In fact, I can distinctly remember a time that yielded tremendous spiritual growth when I suffered through a high risk pregnancy with my youngest where I had to be off my feet the last 4 months.  I declared to many with desperation, "When is God going to show up?"  Although I was a believer, I heard not a word from my Savior when I felt so in need of His touch.  It was awful.

As the memories of that dark period of time in my faith walk percolated, I felt a special connection to this verse from Job.  And then God whispered to me, "Perhaps I'm silent in the storm because I'm trying to be a good example to you, my child."  Wow!  What a revelation!  Suddenly, the story of Jesus being asleep at the front of the boat with the disciples when a squall swiftly overtook them entered my mind as well.  In Mark 4:35-39, Jesus uncovers the lack of faith in His core group of trainees.  Never, prior to this reading of Job 34:29 had it occurred to me that His sleep in the front of that boat was more than mere human exhaustion.  Perhaps it was also a holy example of complete trust in the Father's care.

After this epiphany, I can't help but ask myself, and you, how often have we felt abandoned by the Lord rather than thinking to follow His example of quiet in times of trauma?  When life reels out of control, we feel we need to do something to manage the crisis.  We need to subdue the chaos, make order of disorder, pull in the reins, steer things towards a better outcome.  Seldom, does it occur to us to "Be still and know that (He) is God." (Psalm 46:10)  And yet, He gives us that holy example, if only we will keep our eyes fixed on Him rather than on the problem at hand.

As God matures us as believers, it is His desire for us to see that there is nothing that worries Him.  He is not overwrought or frazzled by life's crises.  There is nothing that happens in this world that shocks Him.  In fact, in His infinite wisdom, He knows each trauma is just another opportunity to grow us and put His glory on display.  And if He's got it handled, why should we, who are infinitely loved by Him, be concerned?  Rather we should follow our quiet example, rest in His awesome Sovereignty and trust.

My prayer for you today is that this little peek God allowed me into His character will bless you in a powerful way.  What an awesome Maker, that we should be welcomed into this growing, tender relationship with Him!

Pray:  Father, life swirls around me like a cold wind, sometimes like a wild tornado.  Help me to remember that nothing is beyond Your control and Your grace.  Help me, by the power of Your Spirit, to have a peace inside of me that cannot be moved by any outside force.

1 comment:

  1. And the truth from those last chapters of Job is that God is still all of Who He is whether He comes in silence or in thunder or in boils and pain or in plenty or want! Thanks for sharing your heart!