Then the Lord answered Job from the whirlwind: “Who is this that questions my wisdom with such ignorant words? Brace yourself, because I have some questions for and you must answer them.
Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell me if you know so much. Do you know how its dimensions were determined and who did the surveying?” – Job 38:1-5
Who put the sun in our sky and chose this planet for the honor of holding and protecting life? Who is it that pushes the edges of the universe apart and scatters the galaxies and stars across the blanket of time like marbles in a child’s game – who is it that gets so much pleasure from all this glory? So vast and immeasurable are your mysteries – and yet the most profound and beautiful mysteries You chose to place upon the earth. You surrounded me with reminders of You, and show yourself in the intricacies of every day life – through the love people show for one another – and through the depths of the love I have for a woman. Can anyone complain when surrounded by such glory? Even just the blessing of life itself… And then – your absence in the hearts of men becomes so clear. Blatantly they defy you, they struggle, they hurt, and they die – in search of a god that is not You.
I searched in vain, though I knew you, I thought that you were hiding the truth from me – High and low, Georgia to California and all I found, looking back, was that I did not take in the coastline of Big Sur, or the canyons of Yosemite, or the great Redwoods with the eyes of a person standing in an art gallery, but with the eyes of someone who had locked themselves inside a cage and looked out on the world in self pity, when I had the key to freedom and life and beauty in my hand where You left it when I told You I was going to go my own way.
Is there anything so wondrous than grace?
The concept of time is an element of the universe which screams of your never ending patience. Should I not fall over dead in terror or awe of all this violent beauty before me – to think You tore the mountains out of the sea and pulled the moon out of the Earth so it would not be lonely like you sculpted Eve out of Adam… All is connected so beautifully – like the oceans and clouds and rivers there should be an overwhelming harmony on Earth – but then I see – humanity. How lucky we are that You did not wipe us all out right from the start. For us to choose to mar such a perfect universe is the ultimate crime.
Is there anything so wondrous as grace?
Now we wander in search of Eden, and only a few ever find it – we sit in anticipation of redemption. Like the wild in winter – all things barren and grey and dead – groaning and aching in the cold – waiting in earnest for the spring. We are not in control. Who knows when their hour will be up? We are a candle flickering in the wind – a match burning down to its short end in the midst of eternity. All one can do is trust in Your enormous plan, the epic poem of the universe. Who are You poet of the cosmos? Who are You poet of love, Author of love itself? You amaze me – All I know of You is what You have revealed to me in Your Word – in Your poem – in the glory that surrounds me. Artist, Poet, and the original Inventor… Inventor of all the natural processes – gravity, atoms, physics, and chemistry. How complex are your ways? You run deep within everything. You crafted the intricacies of the human heart with precision and care and love – You created beings capable of immense feats of wonder – yet we twist the gifts You have given us into monstrous calamities of evil – All because You loved us enough to allow us our freedom. Freedom to fall in love with you, or turn our backs on You, for is love real if we aren’t allowed to choose? How foolish man can be – with the author of life offering us eternal love and satisfaction, and yet we think we know what’s best – we think You may be trying to cheat us – Oh what fools!
We set ourselves on fire then cry out to you in anger asking why You would let us suffer so. We murder one another then cry out to you in anger asking why You allow such evil to continue… And You reply, “Vengeance is mine!” Evil will not have the final word and all will pay for what they have done – ALL MEN DIE – it’s only You who offers us life. You let us continue for a short while because You are patient with us and want all to find true life, but eventually You will bring all things to an end, and make us account for all the things we have chosen to do with our lives… I tremble at the thought of all the terror and all the joy of that day.
I tremble like one before the deluge of Noah. And yet I am at peace because You made me a promise. You promised me I would not vanish into darkness, I will not burn out when my flame of life eventually flickers out. You told me I could have eternity if I just trust You to wipe away our tears. I can stand in trembling confidence as the deluge descends upon us – As civilization crumbles under the weight of its own darkness. I will not fear because You are with me…
When we live our lives in arrogance You ask us,
Can you hold back the movements of the stars? Are you able to restrain Pleaidas or Orion? Can you ensure the proper sequence of the seasons?… Do you know the laws of the universe and how I rule the earth? Can you shout to the clouds and make it rain? Can you stalk prey for the lioness and satisfy the young lions appetites as they lie in their dens or crouch in the thicket? Who provides food for the ravens when their young cry out to God as they wander about in hunger?…
Everything under Heaven is mine.
Who will confront me and remain safe?
Not I… I am ashes and dust – even mankinds greatest minds do not understand Your ways. I will not confront the whirlwind. I will not stand proudly for I am no one when I stand next to You. And yet, if I give my life to You I become Your son – because Your Son said so. Out of the dust you make me into a man after Your image and I long to be – a man after Your own heart. Fill me with Your passion for Justice and Truth. Turn my soul into a wildfire. Bend and mold me to Your will. You have set me free – You consume me – No one has bound me – And I give myself to You.
Then Job replied to the Lord, “I am nothing – how could I ever find the answers? I will put my hand over my mouth in silence. I have said too much already. I have nothing more to say… I take back everything I have said, and I sit in dust and ashes to show my repentance.”
-Job 40:3-5, 42:5-6