My grandsons have been giving me lessons in human nature.
The twins are crazy about puzzles, but their alphabet puzzle is their absolute favorite. They put the wooden letters in it over and over. Each time they finish it, they carry it over and show it to their mom. It’s “Mom! Mom!” until she acknowledges and congratulates them. Then they dump the pieces and do it again.
The other day, the unthinkable happened…a piece was missing!
The boys looked around the living room until Samuel triumphantly came up with the missing piece–it had been under the couch. Mom praised him as they completed the puzzle. “What a good boy for finding that letter!” They dumped the pieces of the puzzle to do it again.
Out of the corner of her eye, Mom spied Samuel doing something curious. He was hiding a piece of the puzzle under the couch! At two years old, he had already recognized the rush of being noticed and basking in the warmth of someone’s approval.
Look at me!
Is there any doubt that much of what we do centers around getting others to notice us? We post something on Facebook, then update the page over and over again, just to see how many “likes” it receives. Or, speaking of Facebook, our “self-worth” is often defined by how many “friends” wish us “Happy Birthday.” Social media’s purpose has devolved from “staying connected” to “Look at me!” Although I hate to admit it, this blog itself, if I’m not careful, could become merely my own attempt at looking for attention.
Like little Samuel, Job liked the attention he received from his family, friends, and even God. Unfortunately, according to the Bible account, he also received attention from Satan, who challenged God’s description of Job as “blameless and upright.” When his “luck” turned, Job’s family and friends accused him of great sin. Job denied this and felt that his suffering was far greater than he deserved. 
Job cried to God saying, “Look at me!” He felt he was alone in the world. Why was he suffering? Why had God allowed it? God was silent. Job, though, as Satan hoped, did not curse God, but continued to seek Him.
Finally, God broke the silence. How did he answer Job?
“Look at Me!”
God bombarded Job with about 70 questions about the world. Job was speechless and unable to answer any of them. But he listened and learned.
Thomas Constable, in a message to Dallas Theological Seminary students, listed three things Job learned about God:
- God’s wisdom transcends the ability of humans to understand it.
- God’s power is infinitely greater than our power. He controls things we can’t.
- God is gracious in His dealing with His creation. 
The most important lesson Job learned, and what we need to learn as well, is that it is more important to look at God then to get Him to look at us. We need to look for those teachable moments where we have no where else to look but to Him.
As Samuel showed us when he hid his puzzle piece, we are born self-centered, with giant egos. If we are going to learn to be God-centered, we need to cultivate habits that train us to look at Him. Study God’s Word. It’s about Him, not us. Find regular times each day to pray. Don’t be a perfectionist, just talk to Him.
Job proved that he was teachable. When God took a break in his “social studies lesson” to ask Job In Chapter 40, “Shall the one who contends with the Almighty correct Him? He who rebukes God, let him answer it,” Job wisely answered, “No way, I’m not saying a thing,” (My paraphrase…) and chose instead to continue to listen and learn.
Look at Him!
- Thomas Constable, “Look At Me!” Dallas Theological Seminary video, 24:23, September 4, 2009, http://www.dts.edu/media/play/look-at-me-thomas-l-constable/