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JOB 11 - A Man of Faith

Job 3
1 After all this, Job finally opened his mouth and cursed the day he was born.
2 Job said,
3 "Scratch out the day I was born and the night that said, 'A boy has been conceived!' ...
11 "Why didn't I die as soon as I was born and breathe my last breath when I came out of the womb?
12 Why did knees welcome me? Why did breasts let me nurse? ...
20 "Why give light to one in misery and life to those who find it so bitter,
21 to those who long for death but it never comes- though they dig for it more than for buried treasure?
22 They are ecstatic, delighted to find the grave.
23 Why give light to those whose paths have been hidden, to those whom God has fenced in?
24 "When my food is in front of me, I sigh. I pour out my groaning like water.
(from GOD'S WORD)

Job had lost everything and everyone that gave purpose and meaning to his life. His businesses, which had exercised his entrepreneurial abilities, were now gone. His children who had brought joy into his life were gone also.

On top of all this, he had lost his health and this had taken such a toll on him that his friends did not recognise him when they came to comfort him.

Then, Job began to express how terrible he felt as a result of all the loss and distress he was suffering. He spoke negatively concerning his conception and his birthday. He also spoke longingly of his supposedly approaching death.
These are the words of a very depressed man - someone who sees no point in having been born and feels strongly that God has him in a kind of mental and emotional prison.
Job has lost the future and the hope that God promises us in Jeremiah 29:

11 I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord . They are plans for peace and not disaster, plans to give you a future filled with hope. (from GOD'S WORD)
This is often how human beings feel when we are in great distress, when we can see no good resolution to the situation we are caught up in.

There are those who say that in order to maintain our life of faith we must never acknowledge that this is how we feel. They say that believers must always speak positively about life in order not to deny our faith. To a certain extent that is true.
Then there are those at the other end of the spectrum of opinion who want us to lay out our sorrows in detail and talk out our sufferings, holding nothing back. They say that if we don't face how we feel, then we run the risk of living in denial and we become hypocrites. To a certain extent that is also true.

However, the most healthy place is somewhere in between these two views of faith:
If we don't face how we feel and acknowledge that life is really bad at the moment, we do begin living in denial and that leads to poor mental health. On the other hand, if we keep on wallowing in our misery, we rob ourselves of the hope of our faith in God, and that makes the situation much more difficult to bear, and may also damage our faith irrepairably.

Therefore, what we need to do is to find out who our true friends are: people who can keep us balanced and sober in our thinking. These are people to whom we can pour out our misery, and who will not run away from us because they can't listen to any more of our depression.
These are people who we must then be prepared to listen to, who can speak hope from God back into our hearts, so we can continue to make it through the darkness.
These are people whose words of faith we must also speak after them, so that our own faith can keep our spirit in the time of sorrow.

Prayer:
Father, today I ask that You will keep me in this season of darkness, even as You kept Your servant Job.
Show me who my friends are to be in this season of my life: people who can help with my burden, but who will continue to speak Your faith and Your hope into my spirit, until this time of sorrow is over.
Thank You that since You have been through this on the Cross, You understand fully how I feel, and You can bring me out on the other side of this,
in Jesus' name
Amen.



See you tomorrow, God willing!