Short daily devotionals for the socially distanced. These are thoughts from my daily time in the word. I use a bible reading plan that will have me in a different section of Scripture every day.
I hope they serve to give you courage and hope. You can subscribe to receive them as a daily email at the bottom of the page.
Wednesday, April 15th
Reading: Job 37-39
‘Thus far shall you come, and no farther,
and here shall your proud waves be stayed’?
— Job 38:11 (ESV)
We don’t like not knowing stuff, we just don’t. It reveals a limitation in us that humbles us, and in my experience, humility and its required acknowledgements are not the natural inclination of the human heart. When we come face to face with our lack of knowledge, we come face to face with our limitations and we prefer to pretend that they are not there, but we all suffer from them to one extent or another.
The greatest minds in the universe are still limited in knowledge. You can have a PhD in nuclear physics and not know a a thing about Chinese history, or American literature, or the offsides rule in soccer. We just do not and can not know it all. We are limited by intellect, by time, by upbringing, by geography, by desire, by prejudice, by many things. (As a sober minded observation on how my brain works, all of those “by’s” in this previous sentence now have me singing a Backstreet Boys song. This is going to be a terrible day now.)
God isn’t limited, and Job discovers this in a powerful and fairly terrifying way as God speaks to him out of a whirlwind in the closing chapters of Job. The narrative has covered dozens of chapters of clouded pontifications about God, and now at last there is spoken revelation from God, and it is incredible.
Job wasn’t ready. You know when God starts a conversation by telling you to dress like a man that it is going to be good. God essentially says to Job, alright mate, put your big boy pants on, and pay attention. And then the questions begin, and they are God’s questions exposing Job’s limitations when compared to God’s lack of those very same limitations.
Where were you Job, when the earth was first spoken into existence? I was there. Where were you?
I have always loved these chapters because they remind me not just of my smallness in the grand scheme of things, but of God’s bigness. When I have tried to burst past the boundaries of where my own darkened understanding is able to take me, I remember this question.
Are you the one who told the seas they can come this far and no further?
Next time you get to walk on the beach, look at the tide line and remember how big your God is, and then rest in your relative smallness. He loves you, and He’s got this. Even the winds and waves obey Him.
Courage, dear friends.