The Upper Room Devotion for Wednesday, October 4, 2023, was written by Beverly Taylor of Arizona.
1 Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind: 2 “Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge? 3 Gird up your loins like a man, I will question you, and you shall declare to me. 4 “Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding. 5 Who determined its measurements—surely you know! Or who stretched the line upon it? 6 On what were its bases sunk, or who laid its cornerstone 7 when the morning stars sang together and all the heavenly beings shouted for joy?
Job 38:1-7 NRSV
I know the basic principle at work when I place a dish of food in the microwave - atoms and energy create waves that vibrate to heat my food - but I cannot pretend to fully understand the complex science behind it. However, this lack of knowledge does not prevent me from using my microwave. I am just happy my food warms quickly. Similarly, I do not understand the mysteries of God, but my lack of knowledge does not prevent me from trusting God.
In today's scripture reading, God poses a series of questions to Job concerning the complexities of creation. Like Job, I don't understand how God created our world. I don't understand exactly how my belief in Jesus gives me a personal relationship with an unseen God. I don't understand how the Holy Spirit intervenes in my life, offering abiding peace through scripture and prayer. As the Apostle Paul said, we see things dimly now, like a cloudy reflection in a mirror, but someday we will understand (see 1 Cor. 13:12). I do not have to understand something to know that it is so. My immediate surroundings hold countless instances of mystery that nudge me toward the awesomeness of God. In spite of incomplete understanding, my spiritual life is born in and nourished by faith.
Pastor Anthony's Thoughts
I love scripted crime dramas. Attempting to deduce who the culprit is, before they are revealed, is exciting. Sometimes I am right, but most times I am wrong, as a plot twist colors the plot. As human beings, we are inquisitive and seek to understand. However, there are somethings we cannot understand, and God is chief among them. Yet, Beverly's reflection reminds us we don't have to fully understand God to have a relationship with God. May we find time today to marvel at the mystery of creation and majesty of God.
Dear Creator, thank you for guiding us to you through the mystery and wonder of the world around us. Amen.