SHOULD WE ASK “WHY”…or…”WHAT”?

JOB 37: 14-18
14 “Listen to this, O Job;
Stand still and consider the wondrous works of God.
15 Do you know when God dispatches them,
And causes the light of His cloud to shine?
16 Do you know how the clouds are balanced,
Those wondrous works of Him who is perfect in knowledge?
17 Why are your garments hot,
When He quiets the earth by the south wind?
18 With Him, have you spread out the skies,
Strong as a cast metal mirror?”

OBSERVATIONS: Job is a book of misperceptions. It shows us how finite we are and how infinite God is. Job’s misperceptions were found in his understanding of the nature of God. Job’s three friends misperceptions were found in their understanding of the nature of Job. Elihu now speaks to Job and reminds him of the greatness of the Lord and the limits of human understanding and reasoning.

It is important to note that the Lord Himself rebuked the counsel of Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar – but He did not rebuke Elihu. This does not mean that everything Elihu said was without error. However, it does set his counsel apart from the other three and worthy to consider. The difference was that Elihu’s counsel was focused on calling Job to consider the greatness of the Lord and the foolishness of Job trying to argue with the Creator of the universe. Instead of arguing, Elihu contended that Job should be humbling himself before the hand of the Almighty. Elihu’s counsel was focused more on the thoughts and the intents of Job’s heart than the previous acts of righteousness that Job had done.

Job’s misperception was mainly focused on his understanding of the nature of God. In the first two chapters of the book of Job we are clearly shown that it is Satan who is the author of his suffering, not the Lord. While it is true that the Lord allowed the enemy to bring this trial upon Job, and it is also true that it was not a punishment for overt actions of unrighteousness, it was not the hand of the Lord that was heavy upon Job. This is the point Elihu was trying to make. God is righteous. God is all powerful. As James writes – “Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone.” (‭James‬ ‭1‬:‭13‬ NKJV)

So what is the point of all this? We have a choice in how we respond to the Lord in difficult times. We can become angry and demand answers. We can tirelessly search for the “Why” of our time of trial. We can shake our fists toward heaven demanding justice. Or – we can humble ourselves. The infinite can look toward the infinite and listen. When Saul (Paul) was confronted with glory of the Lord on the road to Damascus and was struck to the ground, blind and as one who was dead, he did not begin a dialogue of defense. He did not begin to make excuses for his life of persecuting and killing Christians. He humbled himself and said – “…Who are You, Lord?” Then the Lord said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. It is hard for you to kick against the goads.” So he, trembling and astonished, said, “Lord, what do You want me to do?” Then the Lord said to him, “Arise and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.” (‭Acts‬ ‭9‬:‭5-6‬ NKJV)

WHAT DO YOU WANT ME TO DO? This is the most important question we can ask the Lord when we cannot make sense of it all. It is not to seek the “Why” – it is to open our heart to the “WHAT”. The Lord will answer with one step at a time. With Paul the Lord said – “Arise and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.” Note that the Lord did not give Paul the entire pathway for his life, nor the answers to all his questions. The Lord gave him the first step! It was only as Paul humbled himself and took the first step that the next step was revealed. And the wonder of it all is that the second step did not even depend on Paul. Paul’s step of obedience was done. Now the Lord would send Ananias to fulfill the second step and prepare Paul for the pathway ahead.

Lord, help me to ask the right question in my life. Help me not to get stuck seeking the “Why’s” of life. Give me the Grace to humble myself, stop, and ask “WHAT” Lord do You want me to do? This is the question that will bring me to the “next step” of faith, that will lead me to the pathway of healing, victory, and restoration. It did for Job! In Jesus Name!

About Kirk's Devotional Journal

Kirk L. Zehnder is the Founder of Resurrection Christian Outreach. RCO is a ministry that promotes the growth and vitality of the local church through speaking engagements, seminars, various media tools, and written curriculum and books. This ministry was started over 35 years ago by Kirk as a means to strengthen the church that he was pastoring. It grew as Kirk began to share these tools with other churches. Today many of the materials are being used by local churches both nationally and internationally. Kirk's Devotional Journal is a result of struggling with Bible reading programs that never seemed to work. Kirk feels the Lord helped him discover an easy to follow program to Read, Reflect, Pray, and Journal through the Bible in one year. This program is called L.I.F.E. Unlike other programs there are no dates to follow. You can miss a day and still complete your reading. You never feel like the dates and verses you missed are chasing you. You are free to enjoy your daily Biblical journey and listen to the voice of The Lord. For more information on the L.I.F.E. plan, send an email to rcoutreach@aol.com. Kirk is also available for speaking engagements, seminars, and retreats. With over 40 years of professional business and pastoral ministry experience, Kirk brings a unique combination of practical wisdom, humor, and Biblical insight. If you would like Kirk to speak at your church, school, or ministry, please send an email to rcoutreach@aol.com and we will get back to you as soon as possible to discuss your opportunity.
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