He (God) is wooing you from the jaws of distress to a spacious place free from restriction, to the comfort of your table laden with choice food.” Job 36:16
God does woo!! You have no idea the joy I felt when I read this. No really. If I had not been rolled up like an enchilada in my snuggly blanket this cold morning, I would have leapt off the couch in a happy dance. In all my years of studying God’s Word, how did I miss this word “woo” in scripture?
As I have shared my personal testimony of falling in love with Jesus, I have used again and again two words… lure and woo. God “lured” me to Him through my love of reading and studying. He laid out words or topics like breadcrumbs through the wilderness. I would hear a word or a theme as I was listening to a sermon and then I would go home and study what that word meant, buy a book on that theme or topic. And each of those individual studies were like breadcrumbs leading me closer and closer to knowing Him.
In looking back at how He lured me and now being a part of other people’s journeys, I see again and again how God uses the very gifts, talents, and passions that He created in us in order to lure His prodigal kids back home. Be it a passion for learning, an artist’s paintings, a love of nature, a nurse’s care for the sick… whatever it may be… God works within it all to reveal Himself to us.
And then there’s the “wooing”. I would use that word… that God wooed me like a smitten boy woos a girl’s heart. I was never sure “wooing” was quite a biblical word. Was I making a comparison that I should not be making? But I tend to speak what’s in my heart and tell my story in every day words.
So I just left the word “woo” in my story. Because really that’s the best word I could come up with that described the feeling of love and wanting and acceptance that overflowed from my heart as I came to know this Jesus fellow. In the beginning it was a love like I felt for humans. I wanted to be with Him. I wanted to hang out. I wanted Him to like me. I indeed felt like a girl being wooed. And I fell head over heals in love with this Jesus fellow, My Savior.
And now I am just plain excited to know that “Wooing” is a biblical word! And not only did God woo me. He’s wooed people since the beginning of time. Elihu tells Job “He is wooing you from the jaws of distress”. So not only are we wooed to our moment of salvation but we are wooed again and again. Wooed out of sin. Wooed out of the distress of a current trial.
And where are we wooed to? “A spacious place free from restriction, to the comfort of your table laden with choice food.” Be it luring or be it wooing. God is calling us “from” something “to” something better. A place of freedom. A place to stretch our arms and breath. A place of restoration and redemption where the choice of our soul’s nourishment is laden with the best of the best.
Like a starving child, I followed and ate up those bread crumbs laid out with love by God… to lure me away from the distress of life and to the banquet table of choice food. And like a child starving for love, my heart soaked in the love of my Savior, Jesus, as he wooed me with mercy, forgiveness, and a truly outrageous grace.
Who would imagine that a small three letter word would bring me such joy this day!