Summary: A moment to consider the wonders of God as a means to a right perspective in life - as Job did.
There’s a type of boat called a hydrofoil that has actually been around for over 100 yrs. The secret lies underneath the hull, where there are basically underwater wings. Once the boat reaches enough speed, it actually lifts out of the water and “flies” with only those wings in the water. Hydrofoils are used all over the world. Our military built some, and they were especially useful in chasing down drug runners. A boat hull creates drag when it’s in the water. Once the hull lifts out of the water, it can travel 4X faster. It’s a simple principle – the shallower it runs, the faster it can go. Sound familiar?
In order to go faster, we get shallower – superficial.
Quote - Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn - Hastiness and superficiality are the psychic diseases of the 20th century.
Why doesn’t a temporary tattoo last? Because it’s only on the surface, a real one has to go below the skin surface to last.
Why do celebrities crash and burn? It’s because they’re generally people who are focused on the surface. That’s what everyone cares about, so that’s where they devote their energies.
Quote - Deep down, I’m pretty superficial. - Ava Gardner
Superficiality – lacking depth of knowledge, thought or feeling.
Being superficial, in many ways, takes less work: no study, less energy, no long-term emotional commitment, no plan, no meaning to drive you, no purpose to figure out. You just go through the motions and what happens, happens.
What’s so bad about it? After all, look what it has accomplished through the years:
It’s what enabled Nazi death camp workers to slaughter millions.
It’s what enables an entire free nation to sanction the killing of 48.5 million unborn children in our past 34 years.
It’s how My-spacing and chatting and texting on a cell phone replaces actually sitting and talking with someone who has your attention.
It’s what enables people to enter into relationships that are selfish and physically-centered.
It’s what’s exhibited when a society exalts sports to a multi-billion dollar industry.
Superficiality. The conclusion of it is that life is pointless…or maybe it all starts with that.
In general, we’re living life too superficially. Compare the amount of time you spend on the way your outside looks compared to the amount of time you spend on improving your inside. So, if you’re bored, if life seems pointless or frustrating, I have good news for you: there’s a cure! There is! Come back next week and I’ll tell you what it is.
In a few words: We Need To See God. Why? How does that help?
To help us, today, we’re going to look into another changed heart and changed life. We mentioned him last week. His name is Job (not “job”) and his story is found right near the middle of the Bible.
Job is a man who went from being familiar with God to seeing God, and it forever changed him.
Consider Job and we’ll recognize that we need to see God in order…
I. To Rightly Understand Suffering
Now, if you’ve ever experienced suffering, or ever watched someone else go through it, and you didn’t have any struggle with it, you probably aren’t too worried about this. But, if you’re like me and everyone else sitting around you, you realize that we all could use some insight when it comes to understanding it.
C.S. Lewis - “We were promised sufferings. They were part of the program. We were even told, ’’Blessed are they that mourn.’’”
God gave us this account of Job’s life to help us understand suffering. We don’t have time this morning to review all 42 chapters, since we’re focusing on the last few. Take some time this week to read it, and you’ll see that…
1. Job was a “good” man to begin with
Charles Dickens starts out A Christmas Carol with these surprising words: Marley was dead: to begin with. That’s how Job kind of opens. Job was good: to begin with…
In the land of Uz there lived a man whose name was Job. This man was blameless and upright; he feared God and shunned evil.
Those were the very words God used to describe him. So the man we’re looking at is someone God praised as a good man in his day…to begin with. Then, in the same first chapter, within minutes, Job lost everything he owned, and lost all his children, and he remained a “good man.” It’s important to check the end of the story too, because there God says to Job’s friends,
…you have not spoken of me what is right, as my servant Job has.
Job was a good man.
2. Job approached his suffering with a right heart toward God
At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship and said: "Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised." In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing.