Then God Answered…
Paintings by Lyn Deutsch
Music: Awesome God – Hillsong | Creation Calls – Brian Dorksen
In times of pain and sorrow, we try to find answers and solace. Most of the time we face our problems and failures with the thought of immediate relief and freedom from its cares.
A.W. Tozer wrote, “The average person in the world today, without faith and without God and without hope, is engaged in a desperate personal search and struggle throughout his lifetime. He does not really know what he is doing here. He does not know where he is going. The sad commentary is that everything he is doing is being done on borrowed time, borrowed money, and borrowed strength — and he already knows that in the end he will surely die!
It boils down to a bewildered confession of many humans that they have lost God somewhere along the way… Helplessly we inquire, we ask God “Why”
The Book of Job is unparalleled in its literary excellence, a verbatim transcription of God’s words that enable us to understand God’s great love and His eternal purposes in a unique, though somewhat disconcerting and surprising way.
Does God send suffering as punishment for sins? The book of Job contains no compact theory of why good people suffer. It is an amazing account of the best man on earth experiencing the worst calamities. Eloquently, powerfully, Job demanded answers from God, and God seemed indifferent.
God’s magnificent speech in Job 38-42 has attracted much attention. I too marvel at the wonderful images from nature and yet along with my awe and wonder come a nagging sense of bewilderment. God’s speech seems most striking in what it does not say. In fact, the speech avoids the issue of suffering entirely.
Although Job may help us form our questions about unjust suffering, it fails to give many answers for a very simple reason… Job is on trial. The book does not provide direct answers to the problem of pain – but poses a test of faith in its most extreme form. God has known all along that the real question traces back to the original challenge of Job’s faith.: “Does Job fear God for nothing?”…” Will he continue to trust God even after he forfeits it all?
Will you continue to trust God even after He takes your health, all that you own, love and treasure? “Like Job we are called to trust God even when all the evidence seems stacked against us” (Philip Yancey).
“When good things happen, I accept them as gifts from God. When bad things happen, I do not take them as necessarily sent by God – I see evidence in the Bible to the contrary – and I find in them no reason to divorce God. Rather I trust that God can use even those bad things for my benefit. That, at least, is the goal toward which I strive.
A faithful person sees life from the perspective of trust, not fear. Bedrock faith allows me to believe that, despite the chaos of the present moment, God does reign; that regardless of how worthless I may feel, I truly matter to a God of love, that no pain lasts forever and no evil triumphs in the end. Faith sees even the darkest deed of all history, the death of God’s Son, as a necessary prelude to the brightest.”
(Philip Yancey, Reaching for the Invisible God, pp. 65-66)
In this series of paintings inspired by Job 38:1-38 in the Holy Bible, I would like you to take glimpses of the wonders of God’s creation. These were the very first paintings I did, as God has led me to express homage and worship through art. They are crude visual expositions compared to the real wonders of His creation, but these were borne out of longings to reach out to God, to find comfort and answers in my most trying times.
I went through years when God has taken every physical, material and emotional supports in my life. He has broken me to pieces but in every flower that I pass on the way – He reminds me that He is my Creator and my Father who loves me with an everlasting love. He is the only one who can make me whole again and make everything beautiful in His time.
Whatever you maybe going through right now, I pray that you trust in God alone through faith in His only begotten Son Jesus Christ. Man’s search for meaning and purpose ends in finding out that you can do nothing apart from God. He loves you with an everlasting love and in His lovingkindness extending His invitation to “cast your cares upon Him because He cares for you.”
Come to Jesus, let Him be your Lord and Savior and you will begin to experience hope, joy and peace that surpasses understanding. “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).
All we are called upon to do is to repent, to realize that we are sinners, to acknowledge and confess it to God, and believe the message concerning Jesus Christ. “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved,”
(Acts 16:31). ‘I don’t understand; I am tossed about with many conflicts and doubts.’ “Come” He says, “as you are. I am not asking you to understand, I am asking you to believe.” “Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.” (John 3:18).
“That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. (Romans 10:9-10).
Jesus said in John 14:6, “I am the way and the truth and the life.”
Jesus is our direction, the most tangible expression of God’s will and purpose for us, and the only source of a fulfilling life. Being a Christian is not to have a nice comfortable feeling inside you but to enter into the kingdom of God.
It starts in this world: by believing in Christ you enter into a living relationship with God and becomes a part of His kingdom. It is to be taken out of that horrible pit of darkness and sin, shame and evil, out of a life of empty pursuits and self-glorification, to begin to live a new Christ-centered life, experiencing His presence moment by moment, making ways to meet every need, and living a life of purpose and direction.
May you cry out today for God’s mercy upon you and may you find joy and comfort in the truth that those who are in Christ have an awesome Omniscient, Omnipresent, Omnipotent God who is in complete control!
Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that
the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.