Today's Reading: Job 38-39
God finally speaks. And it is not the still small voice Elijah heard. It is a rhetorical, almost sarcastic voice of God in the storm. With the smoke and shouting of the curtained Wizard of Oz, God speaks.
I can just see Job, like Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tin Man and the Lion, shuddering in his boils and sackcloth (he didn't have the prelude treatment the other's had in the Emerald City!) Shaking, hand to mouth, falling on his knees, eyes tightly closed, Job is put in his place. Job has no answer for God who opens the curtain of concealment, not to reveal a small man pretending to be more than he is, but a God curtained because God is way too much for any mortal to bear.
Upon first read, I am overwhelmed with the tone I hear from God. It sets me to trembling. The constant, booming voice of God shrinks me so, that I do not even hear the words. My eyes are closed. I feel like I'm on a scary roller coaster ride and I don't want to see or hear another thing. I just want it all to be over!
But once I recover from the frightfulness and emotion which wells up in me, and can step back from the fear, I see and hear something wonderful: perhaps the most beautifully crafted creation poem in the world!
"Who marked off earth's dimensions?" 38:5 Can't you just see God with a pencil behind the ear and pad in hand, walking, foot over foot, the dimensions of the new dwelling called Earth?
"Who shut up the sea behing doors when it burst forth from the womb?" 38:8 I can just see Dr. God, holding a hand over the earth's pubic area, while grabbing some clouds to cover its nakedness as God's new child, "Sea," comes forth from the womb!
"Do you know where my children 'Light' and 'Dark' live?" 38:19 Do you have their address? You can almost hear God saying, "I know their GPS and I'm the only visitor they've ever had in their home. Heck, I built their home!"
"Would you like a tour of my storehouse of snow?" 38:22 "Have you seen my shelf where I store 'Lightening?'" 38:24 "Have you ever tried to discipline my stars?" 38:31 "How about taking over for just one day and keeping all my animals fed while I go on vacation---do you think you can do that, Job?" 38:39-41
"Check out my birthing stall; I know each due date of every critter!" 39:1-4 "I gave my children 'Donkey' and 'Ox' their strength and their wild nature; they got those traits from me." 39:5-12 "I'm aware that my beautiful daughters, 'Ostrich' and 'Stork,' have regal personalities, but they need some lessons in motherhood." 39:13-18 "And what about 'Horse' and 'Hawk?' Are they not amazing, mysterious, majestic?" 39:19-30
Once I get past God's bark, I find myself on an incredible tour of God's vast domain. My God, who has made everything, keeps everything in order, has everything in its place, shows me the bewildering wonders of God's creation.
You are right, God. I wasn't there. I don't know. I don't even have a clue when it comes to all you've done, all you are, all you manage, all your majesty, wonder, creativity, power, ability, wisdom...the list can go on and on.
I feel put in my place along side all the rest of your creation.
And even though your voice sounds gruff, your words comfort me. For if you manage the storehouse of weather, you certainly can manage the storms of my life. And since you know when the kid of the momma mountain goat is due, certainly each detail of my life is known by you. You know my traits and what growing edges and challenges that lie before me.
Thanks for giving me a place, putting me in my place, and keeping me placed within the shelter of your wisdom.
There's no place like my home with you!