Suggested Reading: Job 45:10-17
We don’t have to be overwhelmed with life-altering problems, suffering great loss, physically hurting, disabled by discouragement, or overwhelmed with worry to be tapping-our-foot-and-crossing-our-arms-impatient with God.
We can feel desperate for a breakthrough, even when we’re not quite sure what we’re hoping to break through.
How can our weary-of-waiting souls be refreshed when we can’t hear past our own exasperated grumbling, whining, or exaggerated sighing?
How can we glimpse hope when we can’t see past our hand-painted murals of if-onlys and what-ifs?
How can we experience the joy of gratitude and contentment when we’re scribbling comparisons and complaints in tattered wish-my-life-were-different notebooks?
Sometimes, all it takes is a slow drip of discontent to tempt our eyes to wander over our neighbor’s fence.
After my health took another dive, my slow drip of discontent burst into waves of disheartenment crashing against the weathering rock-wall of my resolve.
When will things get better? What else can go wrong now? Will I be able to take much more?
Even the minor inconveniences felt like huge blows.
Yet, with a loving outpour of mercy, the Holy Spirit reminded me of a man of great faith who endured immense personal devastation, who persevered through unfathomable suffering. Job.
When life’s circumstances socked him in the gut, punched him in the jaw, stomped on his head, and busted down the door to his grieving heart, Job spoke honestly to God.
Approaching the Lord with raw emotions and hard questions displayed Job’s depth of faith.
How did the Lord respond?
Scripture says He spoke to Job “out of the storm” (Job 38-41).
God didn’t explain Himself, reason, or promise to comfort to Job. He simply invited Job to reflect on the unquestionable majesty of His Creator and Sustainer of all.
“Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation?” (Job 38:4)
“Have you ever given orders to the morning, or shown the dawn its place, that it might take the earth by the edges and shake the wicked out of it?” (v. 12-13)
“Do you send the lightening bolts on their way? Do they report to you, ‘Here we are’?” (v. 35)
“Does the hawk take flight by your wisdom and spread its wings to the south? Does the eagle soar at your command and build its nest on high?” (Job 39:26-27)
Did Job wrestle with the reality of God’s bigness . . . of his own smallness? I know I have.
Did he cry out in awestruck wonder when the Lord listed the evidence of His glory? I know I do.
Did a humble whisper of worship trickle over Job’s trembling lips as he spoke? “I am unworthy‒how can I reply to You?” (Job 40:4)
Instead of allowing Job to withdraw in defeat, the Lord said, “I will question you, and you shall answer me.” (v. 7)
He affirmed His majesty. “Who has a claim against me that I must pay? Everything under heaven belongs to me.” (Job 41:11)
Everything . . . including all of His beloved children. And God cares for those He loves.
Job’s circumstances didn’t change. He didn’t wake up and realize his devastation was just a dream. His grief hadn’t faded or gotten easier overnight.
Though his weariness still lingered, hope glinted as he gazed upon the Lord and said:
“I know that You can do all things; no purpose of Yours can be thwarted . . . My ears had heard of You but now my eyes have seen You.” (Job 42:2, 5)
The confirmation of God’s grandness and Job’s smallness both comforted and humbled him.
“Therefore, I despise myself and repent in dust in ashes.” (Job 42:6)
If we’re not careful, we can misinterpret this beautiful interaction between the Father and His beloved servant. We can fail to recognize the Lord’s incredible mercy.
After Job submitted to God, the all-powerful, all-merciful, and all-loving God lifted him to a place of honor as a servant, an intercessory prayer warrior (v. 8).
He accepted Job’s prayers on behalf of this friends (v. 9).
The Lord restored Job. He “gave him twice as much as he had before” (v. 10) and “blessed the latter part of Job’s life more than the former part” (v. 12).
God wasn’t trying to replace what Job had lost.
Even after the Lord blessed him in abundance and empowered him to move forward, Job still had hard days . . . just like all of us.
Some days were harder than others. Some days were merely filled with little frustrations.
The only constant in his life, in this life, in our lives . . . is God.
Whether we’re feeling inconvenienced or crushed by the complications life tosses our way, the Lord doesn’t compare us or our circumstances with others or measure our hurts against the hurts of others.
When we’re feeling forgotten in the wait or beat up by life, when we’re tempted to slip into discontent, our loving Creator and patient Sustainer continues to love us, extends grace, and remains faithful.
Jesus loves us and remains with us through every trial.
He meets our deepest needs and increases our compassion for the hurting.
He strengthens and heals us‒according to His perfect plan and pace.
As Easter approaches, we can reflect on God’s grandeur and the priceless sacrifice Jesus made on the cross.
We can rejoice and place our eternal hope in Christ, our Risen King, as we celebrate Resurrection Day.
We can count on God, no matter what, because He is and always will be unchanging, unlimited, and undeniably faithful.
Nothing . . . nothing . . . nothing can thwart the power of our Lord’s sovereign plan or throw a wrench in His flawless pacing.
Lord, thanks for giving us Your Word and being the foundation on which we stand, no matter how rough the road ahead feels or how long the wait seems. Please help us rest in the unshakeable peace of Your constant presence. In Jesus’s name, Amen.
Happy Resurrection Day!