Job. Sugar Up.

He is a young man. Bold, audacious, wise beyond his years.

At least he thinks he is. Wise beyond his years.

We’ve all met people like Elihu. It’s not that they don’t make good points (God will never do wickedly. Rather obvious. Hard to argue.) It’s that they get wound up, then start exaggerating, sabotaging their own positions: “I am telling you nothing but the truth, for I am a man of great knowledge!” (36:4)

Dude. Great knowledge is on the way and you are in the way.

Don’t get me wrong. Age is no guarantee of wisdom. Should be, but isn’t.                                       

Unfortunately, Elihu (and his friends) hadn’t heard about the University of Kentucky study that discovered this amazing fact: People who drank a glass of sugar-sweetened lemonade acted less aggressively than people who had the same drink with a sugar substitute. Because self-control (this is important) takes a lot of energy, the glucose just might give your brain the help it needs to hold back hostility and be more positive.

And there you have it. Drink sugar! Have more self-discipline and a brighter outlook! Of course, time dedicated to prayer, ditto the Word, a tender heart, and a balanced diet are also helpful.

We are provided six (count them: 32-37 ) chapters of Elihu. He scolds his friends for their inability to make Job acknowledge his sins – real or imagined. He scolds Job for having the audacity to contend with God. He anoints himself the standard-bearer of God’s greatness, then pokes Job in the eye with it.

In short, he is a spectacular example of zeal without wisdom. So, to be helpful, which is one of my passions, as I’m sure you’ve noticed, I’ve made a short list of suggestions for the Elihus of the world:

1) Have a glass of (real) sugar-sweetened lemonade.

2) Think before you speak. A majority of those fabulous thoughts bouncing around in your head should remain there.

3) Think while you are speaking. With love.

4) Think, when you are done speaking, about what you can do to help without words. Help clean up the devastation. Provide a meal. Run an errand.

God’s going to show up and He won’t appreciate the hostility. So have another glass of lemonade. And brighten up.

Do you tend to speak before thinking? What are the consequences?

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One response to this post.

  1. Posted by Erin Smith on May 22, 2012 at 8:48 am

    mmmmm…good stuff Sister Debra. More tough truth with a hint of sugar:) One of the reasons I love to read your blogs<3 Thank you

    Reply

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