Mercy Road Daily Prayer & Bible Reading ~ Thursday, February 2, 2012

~ Read Job 35-36 Text, Audio

Lord God,

You clear my name based on the work of your Son, and declare me innocent because of his sacrifice. In a single act of all redeeming love, you demonstrate your justice and mercy by having him pay for the guilt of my sin. Who am I, Lord, that you are mindful of me? What have I done to deserve such grace?

I have not been holy, nor lived a righteousness life as your law demands. I have not loved you as I could, nor obeyed you as I should. I have not worshiped, honored, served, nor sacrificed for you as you deserve, because I have been too focused on fulfilling my own goals and desires. I have done nothing to merit the favor you’ve shown me, yet here I am, thanking you for your promised salvation through Jesus Christ.

It makes no sense to me, Lord. It’s totally illogical from what I can understand. It’s not like you depend on me for anything, as if I have something that you need. I am no different than anyone else you’ve created in your image. I’m just a broken reflection of a perfect God. Surely, there are others who are more deserving. There must be some who have more to offer your Kingdom. Lord, why me? What have I done to deserve such a blessed life?

Though I often complain about my troubles, I know my life is easy compared to others. I realize that I have not suffered the pain Job endured, nor have I faced the struggles that afflict so many in this world today. In many ways, my life has been so much better than I ever could have hoped, and I understand that I should be far more thankful than I am.

Unfortunately, Lord, the troubles that I do face, and the struggles I endure, leave behind a residual guilt and pain that often overshadow the good things in my life, stealing my joy and robbing me the peace I know I should have.

It’s almost as illogical as your love for me. On the one hand, I know that my troubles are only temporary, and that one day, you will give me victory over them all, and yet I grumble as if that’s not enough. I complain as if you should be doing more, and I hate that about myself. I don’t want to be ungrateful. I don’t want to complain. I don’t want to be a person who is always cheerless and glum. I want to have your joy.

Lord, fill me with such a joy today that I could face any trouble or hardship with a smile on my face. Give me such a peace that I could take any news in stride. Make my heart content, not in the things of this world, which are here today, and gone tomorrow; but make me content in you and you alone; for you are all I need, morning, noon, and night. Though I do not deserve the love, you have shown me, nor the sacrifice you made on my behalf, they are the blessing you have given me, by grace, through faith, in Jesus Christ, and that’s enough for me.

Thank you, Lord Jesus, Amen.