Job 38:3 – “Dress for action like a man…”

When God speaks, He expects a response. He calls me to take action.  But how do I dress for action?  I know how to dress for church, or how to dress for a workout.  I know how to dress for a dinner date with Beth, and how to dress for an afternoon of play with the kids.  But how do I dress for action?

Confession: I wear things that render me inactive, that impede swift responses to the Presence of the Almighty.  Lord God, awaken me to anything wrapped around me that I must shed.  What have I purchased to wear that cloaks me in false comfort?  Am I hiding beneath layers when I could live vulnerably and in trust?  I’m dressed in ways that clutter my mind and cloud my heart.  I have a walk-in closet overflowing with religious clothing.  It’s time for purging an attire that leaves me too tired for action.

I’m increasingly aware of what not to wear, but I still wonder: How do I dress for action?

I return to Job 38:3, noting especially the phrase, “like a man.”  This points to my humanity, my life in a fleshly body. Every action is grounded in a body. God encourages Job – and us – to live fully in our body by taking action.  

Jesus became a man; God in a physical body.  It was as a man – in that physical body – that Jesus took action.  Jesus modeled for us what it is to live fully human.  He accepted the limitations of a body, but He also showed us how to live fully active in a body.

God, how can I partner with Your Spirit to be a man like Jesus – a man who takes bodily action?  Again I ask: How do I dress my physical body for action???

Stepping back to read the wider context of chapters 38 and 39 of Job, I am blown away – as was Job – by how God poetically and convincingly declares His God-ness, His unending Supremacy, His Power over all things.  During God’s thunderous display, Job’s questions are silenced, his agitation stilled.  

My first and most “manful”action to undertake begins with awe and wonder, humbled by the power and works of God.  Lest I get too big for my own britches, I shed and burn clothing that keeps me propped up, standing on my own, stiff-legged with human determination. Rather than buttoning up my shirt of self-righteous acts, I button my lip in sacred silence.  Wowed by His God-ness, humbled by my not-ness.

God, grace me with a stunning perspective of You and the unending scope of Your powerful reach.  I marvel at Your action in the universe surrounding me.  Clothe me in awe and wrap me in wonder, suited in the sublime.    

How do I dress for action? Simply by wearing pants that allow me to kneel.  When I, as a man, humbly recognize that I am not God, then my first action is kneeling – the posture of humility and worship.  

Dressing for action like a man begins by clothing myself in humble awe.