Bread – Insides

September 12, 2012


Readings for Wednesday, September 12, designated by the 1979 Book of Common Prayer: Job 29:1, 30:1-2,16-31; Acts 14:19-28; John 11:1-16; Psalms 49,53,119:49-72

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In the reading from Job today, we find him focused on how his insides feel, and how hopeless his illness and difficulties are making him feel. He begins with “And now my sould is poured out within me; …” Job 30:16. How often have we felt like our soul, our inmost self, is just leaking away somewhere inside. Instead of being poured out in worship or in good deeds or in love, we sense that our soul is just leaking away into never-never land. Enthusiasm wanes, excitement dims, the light of our soul fades … and it is all poured out within us, making us empty and poor of spirit.

Job also discusses other parts of his insides. “The night racks my bones, and the pain that gnaws me takes no rest.” Job 30:17. Chronic pain in the neck, in the back, in the legs, in the arms, in muscles, sinew and bone. Chronic pain, the pain that gnaws me and takes no rest. Job describes it perfectly. And how I feel stiff in the morning, like my bones have been on a rack. Yes, Job’s insides are a mess, and I can identify with him. His insides don’t feel good; in fact they feel bad.

Job also discusses, indirectly, the problem with our insides (and our outsides) getting fat – Isn’t this the perfect description of the creeping clothes’ sizes: “With great force my garment is disfigured; it binds me about like the collar of my tunic.” Job 30:18. My insides have gotten so big my clothes just don’t fit!

And all this leads to turmoil on the inside, in our soul, our mind, and our heart. Again, hear the words of Job – “My inward parts are in turmoil and never still; days of affliction come to meet me. I go about darkened, but not by the sun…” Job 30:27-28a It is the insides which are messed up. It is the insides which are all mixed up. It is the insides which are dark. We are ill prepared for the external afflictions because our insides are not right.

And when our insides are in disarray and in darkness, there is not help from others. As Job points out, while he is feeling this way he notes that he is related to “jackals” (people who will pick on him to get the last morsel of life) and is a friend of “ostriches” (people who stick their head in the sand). When Job’s insides are in turmoil, his perspective of the outside world is that no one cares and no one, including God, is willing to do anything except make matters worse. We know this is not the case, but our insides have such an influence on our view of reality, when our insides are messed up we can see or hear nothing clearly.

It is the state of our insides which affect our outsides. It is the state of our insides which will determine our outsides.

In John today, Lazarus has died and been buried in the tomb for four days. In translation, this means that he was truly dead. Jesus restores him to life, saying these words which transform the world: “I [Jesus] am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in Me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?” John 11:25-26.

When Job was miserable, he was examining his insides from his perspective. When Job had hope, he was examining Jesus (“I know my Redeemer lives”) from inside out. When Job had wisdom and peace, he was living in God and looking at his insides through Jesus’ lenses.

We can remain inwardly focused and be overwhelmed with our insides, our internal afflictions. We can turn outwardly focused and see the Savior. We can “live [in Me] and believe in Me [Jesus]” and be healed of death of the soul. Our soul looks all messed up through our eyes, just as it looked messed up through Job’s. When we live in Jesus, abiding in the vine, we can look through Jesus’ eyes, past our present circumstances, and into eternal life.

How do we get from point A, where we are mired in ourselves, to point B, where we celebrate freedom from death? We must answer the question which Jesus posed – “Do you believe this?” Do you believe Jesus is the resurrection and the life? Do you believe that, if you live and believe in Him, you will never die?” Do you believe in Jesus? If so, let His power deal with your insides while you live in Him. He can and He will.

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© 2012 GBF

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One Response to “Bread – Insides”

  1. kathy kremer Says:

    Many times we get into a vicious cycle of despair when we are depressed. if anyone had a reason to be depressed, it was Job. Depression and physical illness often appear together. When we are depressed our prayers seem to bounce off the ceiling and we have no ability to feel the presence of God. The more we feel cut off from God, the worse our depression, and so on. How can we change our focus and continue to serve God while we are depressed? I recommend staying involved with a loving Christian community as a first step. We are tempted to stay away because we are not happy, but that is the worst thing to do. Next, listen to Christian music and make the words of those songs your prayers. if you are unable to pray, let others pray for you. Don’t neglect to consult your medical provider and take any medication prescribed. Try to sleep regular hours and eat a healthy diet. Don’t neglect to exercise. As, George pointed out, body soul and spirit are all interconnected . Keep looking to God. Many times this is a spell of dryness that will end up giving spiritual growth


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