Derek Smith, Lead Pastor LHBC
Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head and fell on the ground and worshiped. And 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.”
The historical account of the life of Job is one of the most famous stories in the Bible. Even those who don’t believe in God will refer to the pain and hardship of “ole Job.” While the story of Job may be popular, it is a hard pill to swallow. See, Job was a blessed man. Scripture says he had much wealth, was in good health, and had a large loving family. It also says that Job was a blameless man. This means He walked in an intimate relationship with God and pleased God through sacrificial worship and obedience to His commands, and so much so that even Satan took notice. However, Job’s life completely fell apart in an instant.
This story is one of many in the Bible that begs the question: why do bad things happen to good people? A simplistic answer is because we live in a fallen, sinful world. Romans 8:22 tells us that even creation is groaning because of this and longs for the return of Christ as King over all. However, life is not always that simple. The truth is that we have no idea why bad things happen to God’s children. At the end of the day it’s not answers to all our questions that we need anyway; we long for the peace of God which passes all understanding (Philippians 4:6). Well then, how I am supposed to respond to these hardships when they come? We learn how to respond from the life of Job. We see here two truths to remember when life falls apart.
- THE LORD DOESN’T OWE ME ANYTHING. I OWE HIM EVERYTHING.
When we go through great hardship we naturally ask the question, “why me?” The good thing is we have a God of grace and we can come to His throne of grace and find grace and mercy in time of need, so I don’t believe the Lord faults us for this initial response. Sin comes in when we let that stew in our soul and become self-centered thinking that God owes us a comfortable existence. As I heard one godly man state about the loss of his 4 year old son, “I’m not cursed that my son was taken away. I’m blessed to have had him at all.” Wow! That’s faith! That’s how Job initially responded as well. He says that he came out of the womb naked and would die naked. At the end of the day God doesn’t owe us anything. The fact that our infinitely holy God even allows us to enjoy life is nothing short of extravagant grace, and may we never lose sight of this in the midst of the storm.
- EVERYTHING GOD DOES IS PERFECT
He’s almighty, eternal God. Before the mountains were ever formed or He ever spoke the earth into existence He was and is eternal God. His ways are not our ways and His thoughts are not our thoughts. Romans 11:33 says,
Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways!
We may not understand all that God does, but isn’t that the point? If I could wrap my mind around all that He is and all that He does, He would cease to be God. At the end of the day we don’t serve a God made with hands, or a sentimental deity that moves at our beck and call. We serve an immutable, omniscient, all-powerful God who knows what is best for the world, my family, and my life. Trust Him! Job said the Lord gave and the Lord takes away, but BLESSED BE THE NAME OF THE LORD! Today, know that the Lord Jesus is our blessed and wonderful God who is fully deserving of our praise and obedience.
No matter the hardships we face, may we respond like Job with worship and obedience. It says through all this that Job did not sin or charge God with wrong. In other words, through the brokenness of losing all his children, his wealth, and eventually his health for a time, Job stayed faithful to the Lord. In the end God blessed Job once more. When life falls apart, trust God, worship Him, call on Him in your moments of desperation and the peace of God will flood your soul.
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Oh Father God, I thank you for being the unshakable, unstoppable Lord of all creation. When life seems like it’s falling apart I believe that you are still in control, and I believe Your plan for my life is best. I love you Lord, and whether you give or take away I call Your name blessed. In Jesus name I pray, amen.
MEMORY VERSE FOR THE WEEK:
I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.