“What is crooked cannot be made straight, And what is lacking cannot be numbered.” Ecclesiastes 1:15 (NKJV)
I’m one of those guys that gets bugged out by a crooked picture hanging on a wall, especially when I see it happening at a doctor’s office. Outta all the ones on the wall to pick, it has to be the one right in front of me, doesn’t it? It really came to a head while I was seeing a cardiologist and an orthopedic surgeon. Didn’t matter which office I was in, somewhere in my line of sight had to be a beautifully framed picture, that was 1/16th of an inch, tilted…to the left.
You’da thought I’d be more concerned about my health since I had to see both doctors’ pretty much side by side, but nope, this Pablo Picasso wannabe (titled “Ma Jolie”) is tilted…to the left. Wanna know how I could tell? Take a look at the “Ma Jolie” for yourself and you’ll see why it drove me crazy that it was tilted…to the left. I even tried sticking my nose in a book (right now I’m reading Paul David Tripp’s “Do You Believe?”) but I had to lift my eyes off the pages to see if my Jedi mind trick would work and Ma Jolie would be leveled out, but c’est la guerre, tilted…to the left.
I give up. Guess I have to come to terms that there are things in our world that are just gonna be crooked (I better go get coffee). Anyway…
The big question is “How did things get crooked?” Well, a lot of us may say that it happened back in the Garden BUT ya might wanna go a tad bit deeper. There’s this “prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience” guy to consider. Even Jesus would remark, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.” Guess this is what happens when you say, “I will ascend to heaven and set my throne above God’s stars. I will preside on the mountain of the gods far away in the north. I will climb to the highest heavens and be like El-Elyon!” I’m pretty sure our adversary’s descent was straight down after that interesting bit of self-promotion.
So, does this mean that crookedness is sin? Well, when I look to God’s Word to see how He would address crooked things I find this from Ecclesiastes 7:13, “Consider the work of God; For who can make straight what He was made crooked?” Wha!? Well, that’s not the “Prepare the way of the LORD; Make straight in the desert A highway for our God. Every valley shall be exalted And every mountain and hill brought low; The crooked places shall be made straight And the rough places smooth; The glory of the LORD shall be revealed, And all flesh shall see it together; For the mouth of the LORD has spoken” stuff I was hoping for.
This isn’t gonna turn into the “Ma Jolie” of Scripture for me, is it? Nah, that ain’t how God operates and I know it. There isn’t gonna be a Jedi mind trick to figure this out either, just the wisdom that God has in this crooked vexation that I have myself in. Because it is His wisdom that take stuff out of my control and twist my path into a different direction. It’s in His sovereign authority that things can be turned upside down without our permission.
It’s also in His Word where we’ll find a Flood destroying all of mankind only to save eight. It’s in His Word where we’ll find an upright man, like Job, being stripped of everything good only to be doubly restored after his trial was over. It’s in His Word where we’ll see YHVH send His own children into Exile. It’s in His Word where we’ll read how His New Testament Church was scattered in The Great Dispersion. It’s in His Word where we’ll read, “I form the light and create darkness, I make peace and create calamity; I, the LORD, do all these things.” (Isaiah 45:7) That settles that, doesn’t it?
As we wrap this up for today may we remember that, “In the day of prosperity be joyful, But in the day adversity consider: Surely God has appointed the one as well as the other, so that man can find out nothing that will come after him.” (Ecclesiastes 7:14) That’s a fancy way of saying that we gotta take the good with bad because both of them come from God to keep us somewhat off-balance for His purpose.
God has commanded us to live by faith. So, trying to figure why Ma Jolie has to always be 1/16th of an inch tilted…to the left can be a huge waste of time. I gotta take the whole counsel of Scripture and be content in a tilted…to the left kinda world. Hope you see it that way as well. Amen?
Written by Chris Hughes: Chris is a husband, a father, has an education in Biblical doctrine and is a graduate of the Colony of Mercy. He has been a Freedom Fighter contributor since 2008. You can e-mail at email@example.com.
Think About This: “The way I understand everything in my life has been shaped by the body of wisdom that is found only between the first chapter of Genesis and the last chapter of Revelation. ” – Paul David Tripp