There are times in life where trusting God is difficult, because we do not always understand what God is doing. There is a part in every one of us that recognizes what it is to see justice, and that part of us sometimes causes us to be angry when we see that someone is getting away with something that we know is not right or not fair. Sometimes we can get frustrated with God when we see the innocent suffering, or when we see the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer.
Richard Wurmbrand, in his book, “100 Prison Meditations” tells of a Hebrew legend about Moses sitting near a well at one time, meditating. A man, walking past, stopped to drink from the well and, as he did, his money belt fell into the sand. This man left, unaware of his loss. A little while later, a second man passed by the well. He saw the money belt and took it, and walked off without being noticed. Later on, yet a third man stopped to get a drink from the well and laid down to take a rest.
Now the first man, realizing that he lost his money belt, thought he may have left it at the well. So he returned there, after the second man who took it was long gone, and the third man was now there, asleep. The first man demanded his money back from this third man, who knew nothing about the money at all.
A fight broke out, with the first man accusing the third man of stealing his money, and eventually, with the first man killing the third man because he thought the guy was a thief, while the second man, who really was the thief, was now long gone.
Moses, having witnessed all of this, said to God, “do you see now why men don’t believe in you? How can anyone believe there is a God with all the injustice in the world? It is such an evil place and it looks to so many people like you do nothing about it. Why should the first man have suffered loss to a thief? Why did the second one get away with the money, and then the third man die when he was completely innocent? Why did you let the first man murder an innocent victim?”
God said to Moses, “this time, I will answer your questions about the situation. I won’t do this every time.”
“The first man was the son of a thief. The money belt contained money that was stolen by his father from the father of the second man. So when the second man found the money, he found what was really his by inheritance anyway. The third man was a murderer who had never been caught. What happened to him was, in reality, what was due him anyway.
“In the future, trust that I am a God who brings justice and righteousness in what takes place in this world, even when you do not have all the details.”
It is certainly an interesting story. And there is scripture that tells us that we can trust that, surely, the God of all the earth will do right. We have God’s promises that, “for those who love God, everything works together for good.” (Romans 8:28)
Sometimes that is hard. It’s hard when you’ve been given a layoff slip from work, or you’ve been served divorce papers from your spouse who left you for another, or your daughter or granddaughter has just been killed by a drunk driver. Sometimes you want to ask why, and sometimes when you do, you still don’t get all the answers. And even the answers you get sometimes just aren’t good enough.
It is the struggle Job had when God allowed him to be tested by the devil and the devil took most everything he had. And yet, though Job wrestled through some hard feelings, in the end, he had to realize that we have to start with the fact that God is God. In the end, that is pretty much the answer that God gave to Job.
But when Job heard God speak it to him, it was good enough. “In the future, trust that I am a God who brings justice and righteousness in what takes place in this world, even when you do not have all the details.”
Ultimately, it was good enough, because God spoke it and Job knew that it truly was God who spoke it.
Sometimes, choosing to trust God when we don’t have all the answers is the only pathway to peace.