I Missed It!
As a writer, I often record the things I see in this world. I love to people-watch, but these days I do so with a bit of sadness at what I see. Obviously, many people around are suffering from a variety of influences. My heart hurts from all the suffering.
Many experience sickness and/or fear of sickness relative to the Covid virus. Many suffer financial hardship with so many small business closures due to the pandemic. Children remain home with schools closed. Parents suffer as they wonder how to continue working and care for their homebound children. Many simply fear what damaging policies our newly elected government officials will implement. A crisis on our southern border, threat of raised taxes, and scary vaccinations. Every which way we look, we see unrest, conflict, and even violence.
And I missed it. Several years back I wrote a Bible study - Job: Shlobberknockered with Suffering. Job certainly experienced more than his fair share of sufferings. Not only did he lose all his earthly wealth, but tragically he also lost most of his family members. To make hard matters worse, all of his "friends" insisted he must've done something awful to deserve all that befell him. They held unflinchingly to their Retribution Theology, a theology lacking mercy and grace.
That Bible study booklet is a big book, a thick book with lots of pages. In fact, I gave each of the forty-two chapters of Job two coverings - one chapter of general explanation and another chapter in the rear of the study with more in depth resources and questions to ponder. It's a study that gives the reader the opportunity to look deep into the life of Job and the cultural influences of the day. It's a good study and I invite you to find it here:
In the midst of Job's troubles, God finally speaks to him. He's trying to make Job understand how God controls and understands all. He asks Job, "Have you entered the storehouses of the snow or seen the storehouses of the hail, which I reserve for times of trouble, for days of war and battle? What is the way to the place where the lightening is dispersed, or the place where the east winds are scattered over the earth?" (Job 38:22-23)
God's words bring to mind vast weather storehouses stocked with rain and snow.
But there's where I missed it.
Today, upon reading those verses for the umpteenth time, the Holy Spirit reminded me that there are other storehouses too - others I overlook. God also has vast storehouses of grace and hope, peace and mercy, all reserved for us. How often have we forgotten to visit those other storehouses? Sometimes God doesn't offer the key until the deepest moments of our need, but nonetheless, those storehouses have been prepared, filled, and reserved for us before the world began.
Lord, help us to resist suffering alone in our pain and fear. Stop us from rolling right on by the many storehouses of grace you offer. Help us to enter what you have reserved for us for our moments of need, pain, and suffering. We want all you have for us right now. And most of all, we want your presence. Amen.