Sunday, July 24, 2011
I keep thinking about Uz. He's been the topic of many conversations this week (in our household), not to mention in our sermon last Sunday morning.
Some time ago, my husband and I were discussing that particular unfortunate event in the Bible. My husband was horrified by the incident although clearly not wanting to say that he had a problem with the way God handled it. (This seems to be the consensus of many people.)
Greg: I don't understand why God killed him.
Me: God said Don't touch the ark.
Greg: But it was going to fall, Uz was only trying to steady it.
Me: There are no extenuating circumstances, God said Don't touch it.
Greg: He was only helping, surely God didn't have a problem with that.
Me: Do you think God can't take care of His own ark and keep it from falling?
As our preacher said last week, Uz should have been minding his own business, and instead he was trying to mind God's business. The ark was God's business.
How often do we do that in our own lives? Try to help God out. (Abraham and Sarah tried to do that and the world is still paying for it.) Do we forget He is in charge? Do we doubt He can keep ALL the plates turning without even ONE falling? Or maybe we are afraid He won't do in a way that we want or wish and we think our way is better than His way. (Though just for the record, God has never been wrong and though the human fallacy rate varies from person to person, there is at least one "wrong" in everyones' past.)
What I also found is that people like to try to justify a wrong done. Some because they hate to take the blame for wrongs done, even if they are at fault. It's like if they can justify it, then there is no fault. Some do it to protect others from consequences.
I get a lot of flack because I see things in black and white. There aren't many shades of gray in my world. If it is untrue, it's a lie. If you share something that is not yours to share, it's betrayal.
And as my oldest son pointed out the other day, Jesus came on the scene and while he completed the old law, He also turned it on its head. No longer was it just wrong to commit adultery, it was wrong to even think of it in your heart. No longer was it just wrong to murder, it was wrong to get so angry as to hate someone. So what is in your heart when you act is one thing God takes into account.
And God can take what is meant for evil and turn it for the good. (Joseph being sold into slavery is one example of that.) But just because God is able to do that does not mean we are justified our sins against others. There is always damage done when there is a sin committed. And there is always a consequence to at least one party.
So maybe this week we should examine what is in our hearts before we act (this will be a wonderful exercise for me because the sensor between my thinking center and my speaking center is a little messed up and communication is sometimes malfunctioning, but that is no excuse, it can be tamed with some self-discipline.).
And instead of trying to justify what we've done, perhaps we should fess up. Besides it's good practice. God WILL ask us about it on Judgement Day. And He isn't much in the business of negotiating. No extenuating circumstances that he didn't know about or didn't think of (God is so much bigger than much people give him credit for).
If God says Don't, He means....don't. End of story.
But my experience is...if you concentrate on the do's in the Bible, the don't kindof fall into place on their own or you just don't have time for them. :D
Have a great week.
Tomorrow I will post on Writing and we are going to explore some ACFW Conference Memories and what I learned. I'd love it if some of you would share your conference memories also.