Why did King Edward VII receive the Star of Africa? That rock has probably cost more to guard than it’s worth. Why was it given to him as a birthday present? He knew he was only a cog in the wheel, accepting treasure on behalf of the Crown.
When your child holds out a handful of dandelions, why does your heart swell and your face break into a glowing smile? When your father gives you a gift certificate to your favourite shoe store, why do you jump and dance with glee?
Are they bribing you? Are you preoccupied with the usefulness of a bunch of squashed flowers from a pudgy warm hand? Do you think, ‘Oh Dad, those sparkly boots with the 12 inch heels will come in handy with my homework.’
God receives from us. Not as a bribe to bless us. Not because what we give is useful.
We give to God to express our sense of His worth. He receives because He doesn’t have to be humble about how much He means to us. He is constantly looking for reasons to boast about us, this is what He did about Job, and the biggest reason He has to do that is our boasting about Him, honouring Him, declaring our need before Him.
God does not need us. He is self-sustaining, even in relationship. The Trinity provides within that circle all the love that is possible. Father worships Son and Spirit, Spirit worships Father and Son, Son worships Spirit and Father. etc.
God reaches out and draws us into that relationship. We are one in Him. When we worship, give glory, thanks and honour, and rail in honest suffering, we join in the mystery. We are lifted to a place of honour beyond our capacity.
God received Job’s suffering like King Edward VII received that diamond, like you receive those dandelions or gift card, with a full heart feeling the love.
Teddi Deppner gave this awesome summation in the comments to the previous post: “And once God showed up and spoke, Job had an encounter that no doubt transformed his motivation for worship and obedience for the rest of his life. Instead of honoring God out of fear of punishment, now he would do it out of reverence for who God is, and how worthy He is of respect / honor / obedience.” Thank you Teddi! I couldn’t have said it better!