Unfulfilled Expectations

Job 40:4 “I am insignificant; what can I reply to You? I lay my hand on my mouth.” 

Observation: Through all of Job 38 and 39, God had been affirming His unlimited majesty and power using fascinating examples from the natural realm and the animal world. Then He addressed Job directly, inviting Job to reprove God, to find fault with Him. “Will the fault-finder contend with the Almighty? Let him who reproves God answer it” (40:2). Job’s wise response was to decline the bait: “Behold, I am insignificant; what shall I reply to You?” (v. 4).

Application: Job is not saying he approves of everything God has recently done in his life. He certainly isn’t saying that he has enjoyed the past season. But he does recognize that he is in the presence of the One who made heaven and earth and all they contain. He knows full well that he is speaking with the One who holds life and death in His hands. So at long last, he seems to have put the “why me” questions behind him, questions that had surely filled his mind and heart to this point, questions spurred on by his remarkably unhelpful friends.

This is a place we must each reach in coming to grips with our grieving, angry hearts over life’s seeming unfairness. We are no doubt each confronted at some point in our lives with unfulfilled expectations that lead us to ask God, why do I have to go through THIS? Why does my life have to be like that? What have I done to deserve this (illness, job loss, disappointing relationship)? Haven’t I loved You sufficiently? Haven’t I given enough or served enough or obeyed enough or, or, or? These kinds of heart-wrenching experiences will never make sense apart from me understanding the bridal paradigm of God, and in my recognition that He became sin for me so He could enter into my suffering. He took my brokenness upon Himself. As I begin to understand that He bled out for me upon the Cross so He might win me as His bride, my complaints are reduced to nothingness; my questions evaporate. The fact is, if my hopes and aspirations are truly in Him, then what unfulfilled expectations could possibly remain? Like Job, I will be reduced to silence as I esteem Him stricken on my behalf.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, when I realize that You have entered into every hurtful place of my life, I have nothing left to say. When I begin to understand more of what is meant by the “sins of the world” being taken upon Your shoulders at Calvary, I am overcome. You did it for love, for me, and to show me how I ought in turn to love. Like Job, I am so insignificant, yet in Your eyes, supremely important. I love You, Lord.

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