Posted by: pastormikemcdowell | September 17, 2014

September 17, 2014 “The Divine Archer”

“Though he slay me, yet I will trust in him.” (Job 13:15)

Good Morning Citizens of God’s Holy Nation!

At one time in my life…and by that I mean during my teen years…I was much more athletic than I am today. I participated in high school athletics, specifically wrestling and basketball. Though I was never particularly gifted in either of these endeavors, nonetheless, I trained diligently, if not enthusiastically. My primary motivation for this training is attributable to my coach…a man I both feared and admired. He was demanding and relentless in encouraging us to strive for perfection. Drills were rigorous, stretching our endurance. As each season progressed, the rigors continued, but after a time, became more “doable” and less tedious. We were getting more into shape each day. When it came to this particular coach, I could actually relate somewhat to Job’s declaration noted above : “Though he slay me, yet I will trust in him.”

The good news is, I didn’t die! Though never a starter, I did letter in each of those sports, receiving due reward for my efforts. More importantly, I learned a valuable lesson regarding patience and perseverance.  It is a lesson each Christian would do well to learn in his or her relationship with God. There are times God will stretch our faith, test our patience, and challenge our perseverance. This is done not to break us, but to prepare us for every challenge the Enemy may put in our path, that we may stand firm on that day.

Job faced such challenges, nearly to the breaking point. Well-meaning but misguided friends gave their own interpretations as to why Job was facing these trials, suggesting that he must have done something to offend God or some such nonsense. Job’s response is recorded above. “Though he slay me, yet I will trust in him.”  Christian author Oswald Chambers offers this excellent analogy of God’s training techniques:

“A saint’s life is in the hands of God like a bow and arrow in the hands of an archer. God is aiming at something the saint cannot see, and He stretches and strains, and every now and again the saint says–‘I cannot stand anymore.’ God does not heed, He goes on stretching till His purpose is in sight, then He lets fly. Trust yourself in God’s hands. Maintain your relationship to Jesus Christ by the patience of faith. ‘Though He slay me, yet will I trust in Him.”

There were times I just wanted to quit football. After all, I wasn’t even a starter on the team. But I did not. There were similar times I wanted to quit wrestling. Training was difficult, and I only wrestled in secondary matches, but again, I did not quit. I had too much fear and respect for the coach to pursue that option. There are times in my walk with the Lord, particularly as a pastor, that I have questioned whether or not the hassles and demands of the vocation, more accurately, the “calling”, are worth it. But the “Divine Archer” pays no heed. He pulls back on the bow string, the target in sight, and lets this “arrow” which is my life, fly. I trust His aim. I have too much fear and respect for Him to quit. “Though he slay me, yet I will trust him.”  Let’s pray!

Mighty Lord God; May I faithfully pursue Your divine, perfect purpose in my life, ever trusting in You as you bring Your plans to fruition. I serve at Your pleasure, Lord, and pray that I will remain faithful always. In Jesus’ blessed Name. Amen!


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