Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Thursday, January 27th

"Has not man a hard service on earth, and are not his days like the days of a hired hand? Like a slave who longs for the shadow, and like a hired hand who looks for his wages, so I am allotted months of emptiness, and nights of misery are apportioned to me. When I lie down I say, 'When shall I arise?' But the night is long, and I am full of tossing till the dawn. (Job 7:1-4)

As I type this Thursday blog these first four verses of Job chapter 7 sit very heavy on my heart. Today (01-26-11) at 6:18am Officer David Moore of the Indianapolis Metro Police Department was pronounced dead. I didn’t know David. But I can tell you some things about his life because we have them in common. I know how the polyester of that uniform feels against your skin in the frigid month of January. I know how it feels to keep pushing that Kevlar vest down off your chin every time you sit back down in your patrol car, with each push saying a silent prayer that the vest never has to “do its job.” I know how the weight of the gun belt can make your hips go numb after a hard nights work. I know what it feels like to approach a house or a car where there is a potential “bad man” and hope that I have trained well for whatever might happen. But our similarities end there. I always was able to go back to my family after each shift.

Because of our commonalities I have shed tears over the loss of David Moore. But tears and anguish are two very different things.

In the wake of the shooting I have heard a lot of very well meaning people asking for “prayer for David Moore.” But David Moore is no longer in need of prayer. However there is a certain Lieutenant who was on that same police department who is very much in need of prayer. Retired Lieutenant Spencer Moore is David Moore’s father. I believe that Lt. Spencer Moore can give a special kind of gut wrenching “amen” to the first four verses of Job chapter seven. He knows anguish. His nights of misery are truly upon him. Before you continue reading this entry will you please stop and pray for the Moore family.

Job and Lt. Moore have more in common than either one of them ever wanted. One major difference however is that I believe that the Moore’s are receiving a lot of genuine love right now. Job though…. not so much.

The first 10 verses of Job seven are actually part of the last chapter. Job is answering Eliphaz’s charge that he has some hidden sin in his life that has caused this chain of events. In verse 11 there is a shift with three “I will” statements. Job says in essence, “God I will painfully be transparent and honest with you about the way I feel.” Just for the record, that is the way God wants us in the midst of our hurts; transparent and honest.

Does Job’s lament make you uneasy? I almost want to say, “You can’t talk to God that way.” Truth of matter though is that any child, that’s in a loving relationship with their father, feels comfortable expressing heartache. I really need to remember that. If my son ever felt like Job; I’d want to hear about it.

You want to know what the wrong thing to say to Job at this point would be? Well… keep reading.

Bildad is a Shuhite. That simply means that he is from Shuah which is most likely a place in Edom or Arabia. The long and short of Bildad’s speech is that Job needs to repent. The speech itself, much like the one from Eliphaz, contains many timeless truths about God; He is just, the godless will perish, etc. The only thing was that this had nothing to do with Job. The Lord had given to Job in the past and it appears that Job was now in the midst of the Lord taking away; although even that is certainly up for debate.

Every week in my commentary on Job I keep coming back to one central point. This week will be no different. His ways are higher than our ways. He gives and takes away for reasons that more times than not are far above what we can understand. And he adds to that mystery; love, faithfulness and peace that carries us through even when we can’t make sense of it all. I pray that all of the pain and confusion that Lt. Moore is certain to be feeling right now will soon be overshadowed by the peace that passes all understanding.

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