Your Morning Coffee 07/13/2023
Welcome to your morning coffee! May our Heavenly Father reveal Himself to us as better than any answer, better than any explanation, better than anything else. Father, help us to submit our imperfect, needful selves to your perfect, need-less self. You are trustworthy, Father. We love you and we need you. In the name of your Son Jesus, by the guiding power of the Spirit, help us to know your perfect self better so that we might better obey your perfect will. Amen!
Your Morning Song: "God is Near" by Rend Collective
Your Morning Scripture: Job 38:1-11
Then the Lord spoke to Job out of the storm. He said:
“Who is this that obscures my plans with words without knowledge? Brace yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer me.
“Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me, if you understand. Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it? On what were its footings set, or who laid its cornerstone— while the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy?
“Who shut up the sea behind doors when it burst forth from the womb, when I made the clouds its garment and wrapped it in thick darkness, when I fixed limits for it and set its doors and bars in place, when I said, ‘This far you may come and no farther; here is where your proud waves halt’?
Because I said so.
For the longest time I hated those words. Growing up my parents would tell me to do something, and when I pushed back they would say, "because I said so." When I grew up, or perhaps thought I had, I told my wife, "when we have children, I will never tell them to do something because I said so. Even when they are little, I will explain it to them."
I'm not offended if you smiled or laughed when you just read that. It's laughable. Foolish. Prideful. And not at all how God works.
What's so great about "because I said so?"
Job is a very strange book of the Bible. We are all familiar with the basic idea of the book of Job, the general movements and people in it. But in our perceived familiarity we overlook one of the most difficult parts of the book. It is one of the two great stumbling blocks of the whole book, and a great test of whether or not someone loves God on their own terms, or on His.
Job suffers greatly, and he does not know why. His friends suggest that perhaps Job has sinned in some way to have brought this on himself. But Job insists that this is not the case. And when he confronts God Himself with his complaint, how does God answer him?
Who are you? Where were you? Who was it that does all of these things?
God's answer to Job is, "You are not me. You do not do what I do. You do not know what I know. I am God. You are not."
God didn't explain Himself. He didn't tell Job why it was all happening.
God Himself is the best possible answer. He Himself is better than any explanation. He Himself is perfect in every way.
This is how I came to understand the value of, "because I said so."
My children need to learn how to trust in and submit to me as their father. Not because I give them answers and explanations, but because I myself, as their Father, can be trusted. I love to answer my children's questions. I love to explain myself to them as much as they can understand. But our relationship will always rest on who I am. A trustworthy father.
But God is so much more than any human father. He is so much more trustworthy than any other, He Himself being more trustworthy than any answer He could give to any question we could ever ask.
Whether it be to Job in his suffering, or to me in mine.
A few years ago we thought our son might be deathly ill. We waited. Through tests and odd symptoms, appointments and eventually surgery. We waited. For months. I still had to go to work. I still had to live my daily. I soon ran out of tears. My bones were hollow and brittle, and my heart was a torn sack full of broken glass.
And then God taught me what He taught Job. The He Himself, is the best possible answer. He did not promise that I could keep my son. He did not explain what was happening so that we could tell the doctors.
He revealed Himself as perfect. And if God Himself is perfect, then whatever the answer, whatever the explanation, I could trust, even without knowing it or hearing it, that God's response to my pain would be perfect.
And so I entrusted myself to Him. Because He Himself was enough for my pain. And for Job's. And for yours.
We can entrust ourselves to Him. Because He said so.
May we daily be a people known as
"Entrusted themselves to God Himself."