So Job lost everything. And it was within God's sovereign will. Satan could do anything except kill Job to prove that - without God's blessing in Job's life - Job would abandon God.
Job's wife was having none of it. She cried:
'“Do you still hold fast your integrity? Curse God and die.”
But Job said to her, “You speak as one of the foolish women would speak. Shall we receive good from God, and shall we not receive evil?”'
Job held on to God's unchanging nature.
My daughter and I experienced a Day of Testing this week. For her educationally, for us both metaphorically.
It seemed like an unnecessary test. A test where I closed the bathroom door, laid my head on the bathroom sink and cried out, "Really, Lord? REALLY?"
It was one of those moments where, if you don't hold onto the nature of God, you lose it all. Job understood this. I understand it. Friends who don't know Christ in personal relationship easily think I'm loony tunes. So be it, I can understand why.
I think of all those people suffering horribly through the hurricanes of Harvey and Irma. Are they holding onto the nature of God? Even while everything they hold dear gets ripped away by the nature of the earth? What we have done to the nature of the earth?
Because there is always a choice. Do we give it all up in the face of our circumstances and curse God, screaming out "It's all A LIE!" Or do we hold onto the Person we have met and known and walk with day by day?
Do we cry out like Peter, in extremis, "I'm SCREWED, LORD! DO YOU SEE? I KNOW WHO YOU ARE AND YOU'VE SHOWN YOURSELF TO ME. IN SPITE OF WHAT'S HAPPENING, TO WHOM ELSE COULD I GO?"
After 28 years as a born-again Christian I don't walk by faith. I walk by track history. And when that becomes too tough, I walk by faith.
God does not change. He DOES NOT CHANGE.
So no matter the shit that flies through the air - whether because of me, in spite of me, little to do with me. No matter that all be ripped away. No matter that the tests just keep on coming - that it seems to be one test after another after another after another. HE IS THE SAME. And there is a freedom and an abiding peace which comes from knowing that He is Good.
That is my fulcrum. That is my true North. That is my anchor - and not my own understanding.
'Be present, O merciful God, and protect us through the hours of this night, so that we who are wearied by the changes and chances of this life may rest in your eternal changelessness; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.'