If you have attended church or know someone who has, you may have heard of a man named Job. Much was required of him when it came to trusting God, and in the end he came out stronger than ever. However, in the midst of his troubles he came face to face with the following reality that he describes below:
“Indeed, these are the mere edges of His ways, and how small a whisper we hear of Him! But the thunder of His power who can understand?” Job 14:26
The edges of His ways…what could Job have meant? He goes on to say that we hear only the hush of His whisper, but when it comes to the loud display of God’s power we are left speechless, and somewhat confused.
Oftentimes, like Job, we are only privy to the edges, outskirts, or fringes of His ways. We see through a glass that is blurry; not fully comprehending the intent or purpose He has in mind. God speaks to us in a whisper, as a man named Elijah in the Bible found out. He was looking for understanding and meaning in the sky-breaking lightening, but found none. It was rather in the still, small voice of God that He discovered the edges of God’s ways.
What are some of the edges of His ways? Could we even call them silver linings?
We could start with nature.
When you rise early with a cup of coffee in hand when the world is hushed, and you breathe in the beauty of a sunrise. The perfect orchestra of colors, with all of creation seemingly rising for the occasion.
Or at the altar as you watch two passionate souls vow to fiercely love each other till death do them part.
Or how about in the hand extended in forgiveness? Such as was witnessed when those who lost their loved ones recently in South Carolina expressed love where there could have been hate and compassion when there could have been bitterness.
Or the way the world seems so small when you realize you know someone in the most unexpected of ways. When life seems to be providentially mapped out so that all the things you have dreamed of came together as if that is exactly what was meant to be.
Could these be examples of the edges of HIS ways?
Romans is a book in the Bible that says something quite interesting.
“For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.”
God can be known..it may be in a whisper, but He has infused the world with Himself. Every bird, tree, or mountain contains an edge of His way. The love between two people, the ability to forgive when pain is staring you in the face, that is the edge of His way.
Now what of the confusing nature of the “thunder of His power” as Job said? Could we say that some of God’s edges are thorny and cutting to the touch? Like fire, it is majestic but powerful. When it is held in the parameters of a fireplace, we can appreciate its beauty and receive the benefit of its warmth. But some things may not be directly touched or handled by us or else we will misinterpret them, take them at face value, and we may be hurt by them.
Some things God allows in our lives ,and the lives of others may be edges that can only be interpreted through His whisper. At the end of Job’s life he said, “My ears had heard of you, but now my eyes see you.” Now, the harsh and soft edges of God’s ways could be understood because the whisper of God led Job to a wide-eyed gaze to the center of God’s heart.
It was no longer the edge, it was the center.
We can allow the edges of His ways to lead us to the center of His heart if we give ear to the whispers of His voice.