GOD ORDAINS ALL MY DAYS
From Tangles to Tapestry
“How could he do this to me?” the movie’s main character sobs as she considers what her rival has just revealed—that Mr. Right, whom the audience knows is undeniably perfect for her, has asked another woman to marry him. For the next hour, the rival’s plot works: The main couple grow further and further apart, each confused by the other’s words and actions. That is, until the plot twists, the rival’s deceptive plan is revealed, and Mr. and Ms. Right get to live happily ever after.
This classic storytelling technique has worked for film directors for years. Such scripts provide tension, apprehension, explanations, revelation, questions, and answers, leading to relief and closure. By the end of the story, a tapestry seen before only from the backside—a myriad of loose ends and tangled threads—is now seen from the front in all its beauty and sensibility.
Do you think this only happens in the movies? Think again. This is exactly what life is like in our sinful and fallen world. When we look at our lives, sometimes we see only the backside of the tapestry (read Paul’s words in 1 Cor. 13:12), and we love it when we get a glimpse of the front side. In a way, this is what happened to Job in this passage when he sat down with God to have a very confusing part of his life explained. And in a way similar to a tricky plot twist in a movie, Job learned something completely different, but also completely better, than what he had thought he was going to learn.
Job had gone through a period of extreme suffering. He had lost his wealth, his children, his health, and his wife’s and friends’ support. To make matters worse, he didn’t have a clue as to why any of this had happened. After hours of exhausting dialogue with his friends about the situation, Job finally got to talk with God (38:1). When God had finished speaking, Job still didn’t know why he had suffered so. But for the first time, he saw who God really is: The God who plans the details of our lives, and whose plans cannot be thwarted. Having come to understand God’s sovereignty, Job finally saw the front of his life’s tapestry. Read Job’s story and see whether his conclusion doesn’t transform your life as well from tangles into a tapestry. (And for the “feel-good passage of the year,” read Job 42:10–17.)
Living in peace comes from trusting in God’s plan for your life.