“I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, But now my eye sees You."
Job 42: 5
Somehow, for a good portion of my Christian adolesence, I thought Job was like, three chapters long.
Chapter 1: God & Satan have conversation. Everything Job owns and cares about is destroyed. Chapter 2: Job's wife (how much did he care about her since she is still alive? And really, can you blame him?) tells him "curse God and die" but Job refuses. Chapter 3: God pats Job on back and returns his wealth times two.
Then I read it...it's a lot longer and reading it makes me really wonder about the phrase "patience of Job" since the entire book is either him whining about how the situation isn't fair and he wants to make his case before God or his friends giving him really bad advice.
I simplify...I know. The truth is, Job is one of my favorite books of the Bible.
First of all you have a man going through a horrible situation...and the entire book he wants to know why this is happening. He is trying desperately to make sense of it. If he can just figure out what he did to deserve this, if he can just undersand why God is letting this happen...then somehow it will be alright. But he never gets the "why" answered. God shows up and kind of gives him "what for" and reminds him that we might not understand the ways of God but He is always in control and He is always...well, God.
God never explains to Job the "why" of it all. He doesn't tell him "Way to pass the test!" He lets him know that He is aware of what is going on in Job's life and that He is still in control. And Job's response is a new awareness of who God is...it's like before he'd only heard of God but now he'd seen Him. There is a whole new reality, an entirely new perspective, a concrete relationship.
That verse has been running around in my head a lot today but sort of out of context...
You see, I knew the statistics. I had heard the stories. I was aware of the girls. Today I saw them with my eye. Today I know one of them really loves Reeses Cups. I know one of them wants to be a cosmetologist. I know one of them is having a rough day and can't stop crying. I know at least one of them (I hope more) is looking forward to me coming back.
There's a new perspective, a new reality. These girls are more real to me than they have ever been. And because of that my heart cries out even louder and with more desperation to God "WHY???!!!"
I just don't understand. I don't understand why this happens. I don't understand how that much evil can be in this world! I don't understand the traffickers and the brutal cruelty and manipulation they use. I don't understand the "johns" or the buyers if you prefer. You cannot tell me they don't know these girls are underaged! And if they can honestly convince themselves the girls are doing it because it is their choice then God help us because there are too many idiots running around this world for it to survive much longer! It is vile beyond words! I want to scream, I want to shake somebody, I want to hit something! I want to take it all back for them, restore their innocence, their identity, their lost childhood.
I want God to explain it to me. Instead He brings me to the book of Job. He reminds me that He is ultimately in control. That He is God. He reminds me that I have seen Him with my eyes as well. Not necessarily in a whirlwind mind you. More like the mirror. I know that He knows what is happening. He hasn't lost control of the universe or been caught napping or a momentary lapse of reason. He knows. I don't understand why. Won't ever understand it. But I trust Him. I trust that He sees these girls, that He loves them, that He can restore what they have lost.
My heart will never be the same. And I hope not. I hope I never "get used to this". I pray fervently that God use me to change their lives for the good. They've changed mine already.