Today’s Scripture: Behold, I go forward, but he is not there; and backward, but I cannot perceive him: On the left hand, where he doth work, but I cannot behold him: he hideth himself on the right hand, that I cannot see him: But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold. Job 23:8–10
When we are hurting, we do not need the God of Christian textbooks. We need the God of the Bible. In Living by God’s Surprises, Harold Myra wrote of an experience his pastor had with a woman who had lost a close friend. The pastor gave her all his seminary knowledge about how and why God let it happen.
“I don’t need a God like that,” she said. “I don’t need to understand all this. What I need is a God who is bigger than my mind.”
The God of Christian textbooks is sadly very limited. While the textbooks may talk about His sovereignty over everything that happens, His power, His love, His goodness, and His mercy, they cannot provide answers which will really help someone in a crisis. Hurting people need more than intellectual talk about God to comfort them. They need a God who is bigger than their minds — a God they can believe in.
Experiencing heartbreak and pain reminds us of the important part faith plays in our Christian life. The great majority of faith is directly tied to our personal relationship with God. Where faith is present, we do not have to have an explanation for our circumstances. We do not have to know all the answers when problems come. Faith convinces us that God is even bigger than our comprehension. In the darkness, it helps us see the God we believe in.
You might have just been diagnosed with a terrible, incurable disease. Maybe you recently lost a loved one. Your job has folded. Your family has hurt you. You feel like giving up on God and Christianity because of your heartbreak. Friend, this is where your faith must shine the brightest. The tiniest grain of faith was enough to save you for all eternity. Hold onto it, and it will sustain you through the hardships you are facing today. You may never understand it all. You don’t need to. You have a God who is bigger than your mind — a God you can believe in.
Devotional by Dr. James A. Scudder