Slightly Obsessed #217: When the Hedge Comes Down by Pamela Thorson on 2018-07-11 06:40:06
Satan said, “Have You not made a hedge about him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. But put forth Your hand now and touch all that he has; he will surely curse You to Your face.”
It came without warning.
One day a dark cloud descended over our home, and suddenly the floodgates of hell opened upon our heads. Events unfolded in terrifying succession, crises that I could never have dreamed would have happened to us. We love Jesus. Our home has been consecrated to Christ, and we have tried to serve Him with our whole hearts. We’ve lived through our share of trials and disappointments, but nothing like the onslaught of the last year.
We were instantly filled with panic, and immediately the questions came. What had we done? How could this happen to a family that was trying to serve God? How had we failed?
The Bible tells us that we all stumble in many ways. But in the wake of the disaster, one of our sons and our pastor agreed that one possibility seemed most obvious: The hedge was down. God had given Satan permission to test us.
In the book of Job we read the account of a man hit with a series of tragedies rarely suffered by any one family. In his story, we read important truths for anyone dealing with bewildering loss. Today we will look at the first:
1. Job’s trials were not connected to sin in his life.
In John 9:2-3 we learn that the disciples of Jesus assumed that a man had been born blind because either he or his parents sinned. Jesus answered, “It was neither that this man sinned, nor his parents; but it was so that the works of God might be displayed in him.” Jesus healed that man, and it was only then that he understood the answer to the “Why?” that had tormented him all his life.
Job was not perfect, but he was “blameless, upright, fearing God and turning away from evil.” (Job 1:1) This man reverenced God. He served God with a pure heart and a clean conscience. He even sacrificed offerings for the consecration of his children.
Our problems are often the result of our sin and poor decisions. Even then, for the believer God is at work. His response to our sin is not to punish us but to purify and discipline us like the good Father that He is.
For Job, however, God appeared to strike without just cause.
The Bible tells us that trials come upon us for our testing, to strengthen and establish us in the faith. When we are in the fire, it’s easy to ask God, “Why?” It doesn’t hurt to ask that question, to examine our own hearts. If we can find no explanation for the trial, it’s possible that another drama is being played out behind the scenes.
Next Week: When the Hedge Comes Down, Part 2.
About Pamela Thorson:
Pamela Thorson is a licensed practical nurse, author, and full-time caregiver. She pioneered in the homeschooling movement from 1982-2006 and authored her first book, Song in the Night, in 2008. Her second book, Out from the Shadows: 31 Devotions for the Weary Caregiver, released in 2014. She resides in the Northwest with her family.
Slightly Obsessed #223: Right Clothes, Wrong Spirit
Satan seeks to deceive us, divide us, and destroy us. His bag of tricks and sleight of hand are impressive but imaginary trapdoors to disillusionment. He constantly roams the earth in an insatiable search for humans to devour.
Slightly Obsessed #222: The Rain
Like the grass, the human heart has shallow roots and fades quickly in the dry season. But those shallow roots also are the first to taste the rain.
Slightly Obsessed #221: Are You Green and Sappy?
Being described as either green or sappy is not usually considered to be a compliment. But Irma lay claim to both, and it was her secret to a bountiful life.
Slightly Obsessed #220: We Only Have One Job
The Martha in us makes everything so hard, when the Lord is calling us to be Mary, running toward the sound of His voice; sitting in stillness at His feet; not wasting a moment of our time with Him in distracted busyness. Simply clinging to His every word.
Slightly Obsessed #219: When the Hedge Comes Down, Part 3
Job's soul had been stripped completely down to the dirt. His friends accused him; he defended himself vigorously. Lost in the cacophony was the voice of God. No one seemed to notice.
Except for one.
Slightly Obsessed #218: When the Hedge Comes Down, Part 2
The book of Job is one of the few glimpses given mankind behind the veil into the interaction between God and his created beings. And the revelation is an astounding one. Not only is Satan not in hell, he has access to both heaven and earth.