06 October 2013

When Your Desert isn't God's Fault (Job's Story, Day 6)

Does the dryness of your life feel as though it has no purpose?

I believe Job must have.  After all, he lost everything, including his children, and although his wife's life was spared, she didn't seem to be much encouragement to him.  No, quite the opposite, because instead of blessing his miserable life with even a cool glass of water, she mocks him for his steadfast character.

"Then said his wife unto him, 'Dost thou still retain thine integrity?  Curse God, and die." 

Ouch.  Let's give her the benefit of the doubt, and remember she just lost everything, too.  But to mock her husband for having the kind of unflinching honesty that Job has, and to suggest he give it all up, is a stretch hard to imagine.  Don't we all want our husbands to keep their integrity no matter what?

I only bring up her response to show how destitute of comfort Job's desert really was.  She may well have repented this thoughtless expression of her own grief.  After all, when God restores Job's fortunes, he and his wife have children together again.  We have no reason to believe that amidst all the other restoring God did for them that He did not restore their relationship.

But I digress.  They key and familiar points of Job's story are just as important today as they have ever been.  I wanted to review them today because if you're in the middle of the most horrible trial of your life, they provide valuable insights and framework for gaining comfort in the midst of turmoil.  Although the book is full of good things, I'm simply going to share three

The devil tests Job's faith by the most severe trials he can muster, and God permits him to do this.  Not because God has anything against Job (clearly the devil does), but because the strength of Job's faith can only be known if it's tested.  Fair weather friends are, in actuality, no friends at all.

Job never gets to see the background of his trials, and no one ever tells him why he went through all that he did.  You might not know why things happen in your life, either.  It might not ever make sense to you.   What assurance God did give Job came in the form of reviewing God's POWER, CHARACTER, and WISDOM to the extent that Job no longer has questions about something so small--yet so influential in heaven and earth from those days to these--as his own life.  If you need the same reminders of how all-wise and all-powerful God truly is, read Job 38 and continue through the end of the book.  Like God did for Job, I pray these ancient words will restore your faith and trust in the all-wise God.

God has the ability to restore even more than the devil has the ability to destroy.  For you as much as for Job.  But even if He doesn't seem to, think again about His wisdom, power, and character (which includes infinite love that led Him to die for you), and ask Him to renew your trust in His ways with you.

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1 comment:

Greetings, fellow climbers! Leave your marks on the steps--I'll be delighted to hear from you.