Sunday, March 31, 2013

Job is Broken

Job 42 from the NIV:

"Then Job replied to the Lord.
'I know that you can do all things;
no plan of yours can be thwarted...
You said, 'Listen now, and I will speak.
I will question you and you will answer.'"

"My ears had heard of You,
therefore I despise myself and repent
in dust and ashes."

When Job saw the glory of God and heard
his voice out of the storm he was undone--
he repents. There is nothing now between
them; no questions, no anger, no barriers.
The issue is settled for Job.
What a relief!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

"I'm in Charge of the Universe!"

In chapter 40 we find God speaking again from the
eye of the storm. Picture Job sitting there with his
friends as the wind howls, the lightning flashes, the
thunder booms--then God speaks out of the drama.
I imagine that Job and his friends tremble as they
listen to the words of God. Oh, yes, Job's friends
heard all of it.

"Do you presume to tell me what I'm doing wrong?
Are you calling Me a sinner so you can be a saint?
Go ahead, show your stuff.
Let's see what you're made of, what you can do.
Unleash your outrage.
Target the arrogant and lay them flat.
Stop the wicked in their tracks--make mince meat
of them...
I'll gladly step aside and hand things over to you--
You can surely save yourself with no help from me!"

God then spends many verses describing the Leviathan,
a beast of the sea, then He says to Job:

"If you can't hold your own against his glowering visage,
how, then, do you expect to stand up to me?"

"Who could confront Me and get away with it?
I'm in charge of all this--
I RUN this universe!"

Well, dear reader, I have nothing to say.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013


God continues to question Job through chapter 39:

"God then confronted Job directly.
'Now what do you have to say for yourself?
Are you going to haul me, the Mighty One, into
court and press charges?'"

"Job answered?
"I'm speechless, in awe--words fail me.
I should never have opened my mouth!
I've talked too much.
I'm ready to shut up and listen.'"

Job is in awe. He is essentially speechless. All the wind
has gone out of him in the presence of the Creator,
the Almighty, Sovereign God!

Dear reader, check out the last few chapters of Job.
Sit down, read slowly and ponder the pictures that
rise in your mind. God is so very descriptive.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Pull Yourself Together, Job!

God's answer to Job:

"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...?
Have you ever ordered morning, 'get up...?'
Have you ever gotten to the true bottom of things,
or explored the labyrinthine caves of deep ocean?
Do you know the first thing about death?
Do you know where darkness comes from and 
where light lives?
Have you traveled where the snow is made?
Can you find your way to where lightning is launched.
or to the place from which the wind blows?
Can you teach the lioness to stalk her prey
and satisfy the appetite of her cubs?"
(Excerpts from Job 38 in The Message)

The storm, the booming voice, the questions...
Job is speechless.

I remember a day when I was stomping around the
dining room complaining to God about my kids leaving
and not coming back soon enough or long enough for
my satisfaction. I was startled by the booming voice of
God: "Your children are mine, I am their God!"

Saturday, March 23, 2013

My Personal Storm

This past Monday night I flew into Dulles Airport
from San Diego with a couple of friends. Glen was
waiting in the cell phone lot for my call. It was rainy
and cold and I was so hyped over getting home and
going to bed. The clock read 9:30 and we were forty
minutes from my desired destination.

Jane: "Hey, Honey, I'm ready for pick-up
Glen: "The car won't start.
Jane: "You have got to be kidding!"
Glen: "No, but I wish I was. When I pushed the
start button all kinds of lights blinked on the dash-
board, the gas gage went from two bars to one then
blinked before going to zero. Now all is dark.
Jane: "Let me find the Greens and I will call you back."
(That was not exactly what I was thinking...)

Our friends graciously offered to take us home even
though it was in the wrong direction for them. We left
the Prius unlocked until it could be picked up the next
day and transported to Toyota. Danny called me later to
let me know that the car had no fuel in it, the battery
had died, and as a result the car engine was now full of sludge.
Danny said that it appeared we had ignored the blinking
light on the dashboard warning us of impending doom,
but the gas gage said we had plenty of fuel and we had
only driven 300 miles. It took most of my day to deal with
the car issues and my "to do" list went out the window.
Glen called the next day to set the record straight, because,
for us to let a Prius run out of gas was unthinkable! (I grew
up with a Dad who told me he would not come and pick me
up if I ran out of gas!) Danny finally admitted that the battery
might have given us the wrong fuel information. However, his
explanation did not pay for the damage due to the sludge.

As I have pondered our adventure I realize that the car could
have run out of gas on the highway either coming or going,
but it didn't. It died in a cell phone lot making it more safe to
leave overnight, and easy to pick up the next day. Half the key
was left behind in the ignition, so I did not have to get a ride to
the airport to meet the tow truck. God was in the midst of
my personal storm.  He always is....

Thursday, March 21, 2013

The Storm

When we left Job a few weeks ago he was still
suffering from assaults on his body and assaults
from his friends. (We have no idea what happened
to his wife!) His questions had not been answered.
He has not yet had "his day in court." We don't know
if Job suffered for days, months, or years. If you
missed my first few blogs on the book of Job, go
back to the beginning where God interviews Satan
and then Satan is given permission to do whatever
he wants with Job--except to take his life. Job is

I have decided to leave Job's friends behind as we
have certainly picked up their philosophy on suffering!
So, fast forward to the first verse of Job 38:

"And now, finally, God answers Job from the eye
of a violent storm."

This is not what I would expect from a loving God.
A storm? Really? Job's life was a storm of terrible
events. Where was God all this time? But now,
perhaps, Job will get his questions answered!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Sanctuary

Well, I was going to go back to Job, but this morning I
found myself again in Psalm 73. Asaph was bitter until he
entered into the sanctuary. Do you realize, reader, that we
are the sanctuary of God? Since Jesus died and rose again
God has made Himself available to all who put their trust
in what Jesus accomplished on the cross.

"He who knew no sin became sin that we might become 
the righteousness of God."

He actually comes and dwells within us and so whether we
feel His presence or not, He is always available and is always

It is so easy for me to forget Whose I am, Who lives within.
I forget Him and take on the perspective of time instead of
the perspective of Eternity--and I grumble. Asaph entered
into the sanctuary, but I need only to turn inside and speak
to Him who dwells within. So simple...

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Asaph is Satisfied

Back to Asaph as we listen to his confession:

"When my heart was grieved
and my spirit embittered,

I was senseless and ignorant;
I was a brute beast before you.

YET, I am always with You.
You hold me by my right hand.

You guide me with your counsel,
And afterward you will take me
into glory.

Whom have I in heaven but You?
And earth has nothing I desire
besides You.

My flesh and my heart fail,
but God is the strength of my heart
and my portion forever."
(Psalm 73:21-26)

These six verses are why I LOVE this psalm!
Asaph sees his own heart and then he sees the
heart of God--and he worships. Repentance is
changing direction, and it always ends in

Well, what about Job? 

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Howl You Rich!

Asaph's conflict was that the high and mighty rich of
the land, get off scott free. However, I made a stop in
the New Testament and discovered some strong words
in the book of James:

"Go to now, ye rich men, weep and howl for your
miseries that shall come upon you.

Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are 

Your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them
shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh
as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasure together for 
the last days." (James 5:1-3, KJV)

James is not simply speaking of the well-to-do. No, he is
talking about those who collect and hoard wealth at the
expense of others with a goal to control them. The recent
president of Venezuela is an example. Chavez raped the
land of its wealth, shut down the freedom of the people,
and died with 2 billion dollars, money and goods taken
from the people who became poor under his leadership.
Chavez died of cancer in his belly. He suffered a long
time. See the line above: "...shall eat your flesh as it were
by fire." James also talks about the time we are living in.

God says that He knows about this and the story is yet
to completely unfold.
Reader, our God is a God of Justice.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Slippery Ground

Asaph’s heart is distressed and grieved because the 
wicked seem to get off scott free. He does not see justice. 
Since he has no place to go for answers, he turns to his 

“...when I tried to understand all this, it was 
oppressive to me, till I entered the sanctuary of God; 
then I understood their final destiny.

Surely You place them on slippery ground
You cast them to ruin
How suddenly are they destroyed.”
(Ps 73:17-19)

God places the wicked on slippery ground; in a moment, 
they are gone. Jonathan Edward’s in his famous book, 
Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God, speaks of the 
wicked who hang by a thread over an empty pit.  
I am reminded of the recent story where a sleeping man 
was swallowed by the earth--no place is “safe.” Reader, 
do you know where you will find yourself after you die? 
Trust Jesus today for salvation.

check out my website:

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

In Vain

Asaph goes on in verse 13 of Psalm 73:

“Surely in vain have I kept my heart pure.
In vain have I washed my hands in innocence.
All day long I have been plagued;
I have been punished every morning.”

Wow, Asaph sounds a lot like Job! 
When I read these verses years ago, anger rose 
up in my heart. Asaph was asking my questions 
and drawing my conclusions. It seemed to me 
that people who loved God and lived a good 
life had more problems compared to the 
arrogant bullies who lived  charmed lives. 
Where is the justice in that?

Monday, March 11, 2013

The Wicked Have it Made!

I have been so ticked with Eliphaz. So pompous!  
A number of years ago I was struggling with 
an issue that bothered me greatly which was, why don't
the wicked suffer? In searching the scriptures I found
an answer in Psalm 73.

Asaph has a serious problem and he makes a statement:
 “The wicked have it made!” Let’s listen in:

“I envied the arrogant when I saw the prosperity 
of the wicked.They have no struggles; 
their bodies are healthy and strong. 
They are far from the burdens of the common man; 
they are not plagued by human ills…

...pride is their necklace
They are clothed with violence.
From their hearts come iniquity…

They say, ‘how can God know?’

They (the wicked) are always carefree and 
they increase in wealth.” (Psalm 73:3-12)

Right on Asaph! At least that's the way I saw it.
I wonder what would happen if we put Eliphaz 
and Asaph together in the same room?

(Check out the previous blogs as to how Job's friends 
viewed evil doers)

Thursday, March 7, 2013

A Sinbag?

Eliphaz blows through the 15th chapter of Job:

"I've a thing or two to tell you, so listen up!
I'm letting you in on my views;"

(This should be interesting...)

"Those who live by their own rules, not God's rules, 
can expect nothing but trouble, and the longer 
they live the worse it gets..."

(Eliphaz then lists the disasters--everything
from fear and despair, to hunger and homelessness.)

"And then death--don't think they'll escape that! 
They'll end up shriveled weeds brought down 
by a puff of God's breath.There's a lesson here: 
whoever invests in lies, gets lies for interest, 
paid in full...
The godless, are fruitless--a barren crew;
A life built on bribes goes up in smoke..."

This is Eliphaz at his worst.
So far no one has come up with a definite sin in Job's life
yet he is called a scumbag, a windbag, a sinbag--
well, I made that one up.
The whole premise is that if you live a good life,
your life will be pleasant and good, but if you sin,
you will reap awful things. Truth?

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Graffitied with Lies

Job continues to speak out of chapter 13:

“I’m taking my case straight to God Almighty.
I’ve had it with you--
I’m going directly to God.

You graffiti my life with Lies.
You’re a bunch of pompous quacks!”

Job is hurting big time. His calls for an 
objective trial where he is heard, but 
what his heart longs for is 
intimacy, not information; 
not more talk, but a hug.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Caves of Darkness

Job answers Zophar in chapter 12:

“True wisdom and real power belong to God;
From Him we learn to live, 
and also what to live for…

Strength and success belong to God;
Both deceived and deceiver 
must answer to Him…

He shines a spotlight into caves of darkness…”

I love it! Here is Job “in the depths of despair,” 
(Anne of Green Gables) and he is able or enabled 
to speak the truth about God.

That last line, “He shines a spotlight into the caves of darkness,” 
has lately become a place of rest for me. He sees into the motives, 
the desires of my heart, NOT just my actions. He knows that my 
deepest desire is not to PLEASE Him, but to KNOW Him.

“That I may know Him
The power of His resurrection
The fellowship of His suffering (really?)
Being made conformable unto His death.
(Phil 3:10)