November 16, 2022 –
Give the man over to Satan and let him experience the destruction of his flocks, possessions, children, and health, and you have a blameless and upright Job.
Sometimes we find ourselves outside our comfort zone and face a life that’s not perfect and fair. For example, the Old Testament character Job, whom scripture describes as a friend of God and a righteous man, is tested to prove his allegiance to the Lord. Scripture says, “In the land of Uz there lived a man named Job. This man was blameless and upright; he feared God and shunned evil.” (Job 1:1)
Isolated from God and infected with terrible boils from the sole of his foot to the top of his head, Job sat on an ash pile, lamenting his life’s unfair moment. In his dark moment, his three closest friends visit him and accuse Job of sinning against God; therefore, he brings these calamities upon himself. Their solution to Job’s terrible circumstances is to admit his sin and ask God to forgive him.
Job declared his innocence. “As for you, if you redirect your heart and lift up your hands to Him in prayer — if there is iniquity in your hand, remove it, and don’t allow injustice to dwell in your tents — then you will hold your head high, free from fault. You will be firmly established and unafraid.” (Job 11:13-15 HCSB). None of Job’s difficulties were his fault.
Know that life has obstacles, trials, and tests. If one assumes life will be fair, there will eventually be disappointments, disillusionment, frustration, and feelings of loss. These are powerful emotions that need to be released to God.
God is the God of restoration. “After Job had prayed for his friends, the Lord restored his prosperity and doubled his previous possessions. All his brothers, sisters, and former acquaintances came to his house and dined with him in his house.” (Job 42:10-11)
A while back, I came across a line attributed to Turkish playwright Mehmet Murat ildan, “If we keep telling that life is unfair but do nothing serious about it, then life will forever continue to remain unfair!” Life was unfair to Job, but he did something about it; he bared his heart to God. He openly discussed his life, fears, and anger with God. Are you that open with God?
Life is hard because we are worried and fearful that we have not done well in our lives. We are concerned that we are not living up to our potential, living our dream, working in our passion, or planning for retirement. Life is hard because we want more and believe we are already failing.