You would plunge me into a slime pit so that even my clothes would detest me. Job 9:31
I have daughters. I endured the slime stage, buying gallons of glue and colored sparkles, praying my kitchen would soon recover. And I have heard my jeans groan and curse, “For the love of all things good, woman, eat a salad!” But that might be where my similarities to Job of the Bible end. And yet, there are things happening that seem unreal, unfair, and harsh.
I hate to be vague, but it’s not my story to tell. And yet I’m on this life-altering roller coaster with those I love. I’m waiting for word and crying the tears and taking pills so I can sleep. I’m supporting and loving in inadequate ways and hitting my knees over and over until I no longer know what to pray. Like no other time in recent years I am racing to spend time with God every day because I don’t know what else to do. And that time lead me to the book of Job this week.
To summarize the story of Job (Did you know you can SparksNotes stories of the Bible? Who knew?), this wealthy, righteous man was tortured by Satan to prove his faithfulness to God. In the course of one day, Job receives word that his livestock, servants and all 10 children have died. He then loses his own health as he breaks out in painful, disgusting sores from head to toe.
As the story progresses and Job endures his many hardships, he is quoted as saying, “I have no peace, no quietness; I have no rest, but only turmoil.” (Job 3:26). And “For sighing has become my daily food; my groans pour out like water.” (3:24). “When I lie down I think, ‘How long before I get up?’ The night drags on, and I toss and turn until dawn.” (7:4) Poor guy didn’t have access to Ambien. “Therefore I will not keep silent; I will speak out in the anguish of my spirit, I will complain in the bitterness of my soul.” (7:11)
Maybe you don’t consider yourself blameless like Job (I know I don’t!), and maybe you haven’t lost EVERYTHING. But can you relate to any of these things he said? Sleepless nights, no appetite, bitterness, turmoil in your spirit? Any similar feelings? Me too. And yet after everything, Job still acknowledges God with praises. “The Spirit of God has made me; the breath of the Almighty gives me life.” (33:4) “God’s voice thunders in marvelous ways; he does great things beyond our understanding.” (37:5)
Perhaps the most encouraging part of Job’s experience is his confession of the deeper knowledge and intimacy He enjoyed with God after having lost everything and experienced God’s faithfulness through to the other side. He says, “My ears had heard of you but now my eyes have seen you.” (42:5) “How great is God – beyond our understanding!” (36:26)
In the midst of Job’s heartache – before any earthly blessing was restored to him – he exclaimed, “I know that my redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand on the earth.” (19:25) When all else slips away, we can cling to that.
And now for this week’s featured post!
Mini Delights by Jennifer of teawithjennifer.blog.
Most of us are so busy and distracted and noisy that I’m afraid we are forgetting how to relax, be with our own thoughts and even use our imaginations! Our relationships, creativity and attention spans are suffering. Jennifer doesn’t preach at your about it like I just did (good grief), but her short and sweet post may be just the mental vacation you need today. Hop on over to her sight and take a deep breath while you are there.
Now for this week’s link-up! Let’s bless and encourage one another in our walk with the Lord.
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