This book is so hard!
God allowes “all hell to break loose” in Job’s life. Foreign enemies capture his herds and servants, his wealth. Then fire from heaven, lightening, starts a fire, burning up other herds. That would be equivalent of losing your business or job, your bank accounts and investments, all in one moment.
Other enemies capture his camels, his mode of transportation if he needs to flee, and another signs of wealth. It’s as if your car, bike, bus, boat, air travel, everything material is now gone!
Then a tornado hit the building his children are in, killing them all. There are no future generations…no future.
How did Job respond?
First, he felt the pain. Don’t let anyone brush this off as if God spares Christians pain. There are no pat answers. There is just pain, waves and waves of gut-wrenching pain. Let anyone who has known deep grief tell you about the pain that rocked them.
Secondly, he expressed the pain. He didn’t hide it. He did what people in his culture did to let the pain out of himself and on display for all to see. He couldn’t sit with the pain inside of him, so he arose. He tore the clothes covering his body, emotions and pain screaming. He shaved his head because he couldn’t bear to even have his hair cover his pain. And he fell to the ground with no personal strength to endure the overwhelming suffering.
Third, he worshipped.
That was not what I was expecting, nor what I would see myself doing if I had gotten the news Jeb had. But he said,”
“Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return.
The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away;
blessed be the name of the Lord.”
Job knew all the blessings he had been given. The ability to have children and wealth and power were not of his own. They were blessings from God he never felt he deserved in the first place. And even when they were taken away —
In all this Job did not sin or charge God with wrong.
There are no “whys?” There is no defense. There are no accusations from Job that he didn’t deserve such awful suffering. He didn’t tell God it was unfair, or that his enemy deserved it more than he did.
Job did not sin or charge God with wrong.
I think of myself, in my meager sufferings. I’m often tempted to compare myself to others, to feel I’m getting the raw end of the stick. Or I’m tempted to say, “If you don’t care, I don’t either” and push God away.
Can I have the same response as Job?