We sang at Community Church in Rockingham, NC last night. While I was waiting for the service to begin, I picked up a church bulletin and began to read the Pastor’s Corner. It was so inline with situations in our lives, ministry and our friends lives, that I just wanted to share it with you all. I hope that it will encourage and lift you up as much as it did me. Thank you Pastor Robby Stewart for allowing me to share this with our friends.
I was reading the first few chapters of Job the other morning and I have to admit, I was somewhat ashamed and embarrassed. The thing that stood out the most to me was the love that Job had for God. I can’t say that I have ever had a day like Job had in the first chapter. We all have had our share of bad days and the loss that some have experienced can be heart wrenching. But I can say, I have never met anyone who lost their whole family, servants and possessions in one day, but what about losing all of these in a matter of seconds? The people of Joplin, Missouri; Tuscaloosa, Alabama and Japan know how it feels. Just imagine, it starts out a sunny day, life is good, you have plans for the evening, supper and other activities, but by the end of the day you have lost your home, your business, maybe even worse, your loved ones. There are people who can identify with Job and definitely sympathize with him. Yet…JOB WORSHIPPED! That had to be the most difficult thing in the world for Job to do. What was it that motivated him? I believe it had to be his love for the Lord. The most sincere love of all. To know that in the midst of disaster and chaos, God is still there and (believe it or not) still cares, takes a faith that has been wrung out of the deepest pores of the soul. I am not saying that everyone can handle this like Job and the people of Joplin, Tuscaloosa and Japan, and not everyone has to. To know that God allowed it, and not caused it, means that His grace will flow over-abundantly toward them and will be sufficient for them. That can excite a “faith that works by love” which in turn, will prompt them to say as Job, “The Lord gives and the Lord takes away, blessed be the name of the Lord.” This does not mean that we love more or less. What it means is that God is wise and in control. In a world where suffering must occur He will not allow anymore on us than we can bare and that His grace will not strengthen. I conclude with this thought. You and I have never experienced anything like Job, the tornado victims of this spring, or even the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, but we can still worship and must worship, not because of what He gives or takes away, but simply because of WHO HE IS!