What is it to you?

Every day. Every day I confess my sins, my sinfulness. Every day.

But Job asks, “If I sin, what do I do to you, you watcher of humanity?”

Yes, Job is feeling reckless; that recklessness that hold hands with despair, kisses grief, hugs hope goodbye.

Still, his question is evocative, and interesting, and provocative.

What difference does it make to Almighty, Omnipotent, Changeless, Ageless, Creating God if one little creature does one little sinful thing? What can that do to God?

Come to that, using a theme touched on previously, even if that little sin is a gateway to bigger sins, even to evil, even to Job’s destruction – Job is already half-destroyed. And how, anyway, does that change the Ancient of Days, who’s seen it all before and continued on, nothing to see here, move along please?

It makes no difference, not to God. Unless, of course, God loves us.

Unless God loves us, God will remain unmoved, unchallenged, unchastened and unchastening, unscathed by our evil, by our little sins.

Unless God loves us.

Love, which touches hope on her heaving shoulders and holds her grief while she weeps.

Love, which calls recklessness back from the brink, teetering with it, swaying on the windswept cliff, howling into the wind, unheard.

Love, which waits for despair to come home, burning a light at the window, waking, watching.

Love, whose heart is scarred by a thousand small slights, whose heart keeps on anyway beating out its intimate tattoo: I love you, stay strong, hold on, come home, come home …

It’s not the answer on the tip of the writer’s tongue, not in this chapter, not here. It’s one I would hesitate to proffer towards Job, in his fear and pain and misery – he might bite me.

But I believe in it, nevertheless. And I confess.

About Rosalind C Hughes

Rosalind C Hughes is a priest and author living near the shores of Lake Erie. After growing up in England and Wales, and living briefly in Singapore, she is now settled in Ohio. She serves an Episcopal church just outside Cleveland. Rosalind is the author of A Family Like Mine: Biblical Stories of Love, Loss, and Longing , and Whom Shall I Fear? Urgent Questions for Christians in an Age of Violence, both from Upper Room Books. She loves the lake, misses the ocean, and is finally coming to terms with snow.
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