Today’s Reading: Job 37:1-39:30 (additional reading: Psalm 44:9-26 and Proverbs 22:13)
There’s a type of boat called a hydrofoil. The secret of this boat 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. A boat hull creates drag when it’s in the water. Once the hull lifts out of the water, it can travel 4 times 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. In fact, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn claimed ‘Hastiness and superficiality are the psychological 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. 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.
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!
Job is a man who went from being familiar with God to seeing God, and it forever changed him. One of the reasons was Job understanding that the good things in his life were an allotment from God in the first place. They weren’t his own. He had accepted good from God. He was ready to accept trouble too. Shallow people, who don’t have a genuine relationship with God, can’t appreciate what they have.
Job’s experience didn’t just happen there in one rainy afternoon. He’d been suffering for over a week at the very least. He’d experienced losing his wealth, all his children, the support of his wife, the respect of his neighbours, and the sound advice of his friends. He’d wrestled with life and it’s meaning, he’d wrestled with questions about justice and about the nature of God. The road he had travelled is the one we wouldn’t choose when we have the choice because it’s hard.
Let’s not write off all suffering as a bad experience. It’s hard at the time that we often seek God more and grow deeper in our relationship with Him.
How can you guard yourself against becoming superficial?
Father, Thank You that there is nothing superficial with You. Help us to live true also, to be real in our walk with You. Help us not to be shallow, but to be established. In Jesus’ name, Amen