Wednesday, August 31, 2011

When Negatives Abound

“’You speak as a foolish woman,’ he told her. ‘Should we accept only good from God and not adversity?’ Throughout all this Job did not sin in what he said.” (Job 2:10)

Two dynamics are at work in Job’s statement above. The first is an incomplete picture. Job did not have the complete picture of God in his understanding. He saw God as the source of his affliction. Ultimately, God was the source but only in that He allowed Job’s afflictions. Satan was the one who actually afflicted Job, not God. God could have stopped it, but He did not because of His higher purposes for Job: to strengthen his faith.

The second dynamic is a picture of integrity. Integrity bonded with faith led Job to say, “Should we accept only good from God and not adversity?” It’s far more common for people to rail against God when adversity comes, but Job trusted God’s purposes for his life. As painful and horrible as his circumstances were, his trust in God prevailed.

It’s easy to trust God’s purposes when the positive blessings flow. It’s not so easy when the negatives abound. And yet, that is exactly what He is seeking in us. God is looking for commitment regardless. He is looking to produce that in us, and He seeks to strengthen it in us.

Whether we have an incomplete picture, or whether we are a picture of integrity, may we trust God and His purposes, both when life sails calm waters or when the storms of live arise suddenly.

Father, In all the circumstances we face in this life, both when the positives flow or the negatives abound, may we turn to You in trust as You guide us through them. Amen.

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