Have you ever felt like God had it in for you? Job did. And who could argue? After living a remarkably upright life, suddenly Job found himself stripped of everything he held dear—everything, that is, except his relationship with God. To his embittered wife’s dismay, Job believed that God alone was enough. Holding on to the One who held him, he knew God had a good explanation for it all. “The Lord gives and the Lord takes away, blessed be the name of the Lord,” Job offered in a sacrifice of praise.
But even in submission, Job felt tremendous sadness. Pouring out his heart before God, he cried out in honest agony before the One he knew was sovereign over it all. Friends who had come to comfort heard his cry, but completely miscalculated the cause of his misery. Job’s friends wanted to blame his pain and suffering on Job’s sin, but Job argued his righteous record pointed to a different divine plan he didn’t yet understand. After seemingly endless discourse with his discouraging buddies, Job turned his frustration to the One who had allowed it all—and boldly asked for an answer.
Why have you done this to me? He wanted to know.
He wasn’t ready for the answer.
In a whirlwind of words more torrential than the fiercest storm, God asserted his absolute authority over all of creation. With wisdom far deeper, greater, and infinite than anything our mortal minds can even begin to conceive, God calls His will into being. Through creativity and power He sustains every breath. And even though he has given man the ability to think and reason, we can never fully comprehend God’s infinite genius. More than that, God is not beholden to us. He does not owe explanations at our demand. The potter needn’t define His technique to the pottery. Instead, we simply need to surrender to His touch.
And Job did. Repenting in dust and ashes, he humbled his body—that jar of clay—before the One who molds His people as He sees fit.
Does such knowledge of our frailty make us feel powerless? Apart from God, absolutely. But the beauty comes in the One who promises good for those who belong to Him. Though we are weak, His strength surges in our behalf—for our good. God, who still reigns supreme in heaven and earth, works all things for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose. To God be the glory!