As a part of my chronological reading plan, I read the book of Job recently. Job has been one of my favorite books of the Bible, which some may consider strange. Some people think that this book is depressing and confusing, which I can understand how people may feel that way. But if you can get past the deep emotional trauma that Job was experiencing, you will find God fully and completely with him.
If you are unaware of the book of Job, here is a brief synopsis:
Job was a righteous man who was wealthy and had a loving family. One day, satan approached God and challenged him: if he attacked everything that Job had, Job would curse God. God allowed satan to strike everything Job had but commanded that satan spare his life. Satan went out and wreaked havoc. Job’s cattle were stolen, his servants were killed, and his children were killed in a freak accident. That was enough for Job to enter into complete grief. Eventually, satan also struck Job with painful boils over his entire body. Job was in total despair! Job’s friends then try and comfort him, but in actuality, they were accusing him of doing something to deserve all of the calamity that he was experiencing. Job always proclaimed his innocence to them, but they had the mindset that bad things happen to bad people. If only he were good, he would be blessed by God. Eventually, God spoke to Job before he got closer to sinning against him with his words. In the end, God doubled everything that he had and healed him from his infirmity.
There are so many lessons in Job. But the main lesson I found is that God is sufficient. He is enough in every circumstance. He is enough in our trials, in our storms, in our fears, and in everything else. Everything under the heavens belongs to God. No matter what happens to us, God is there because we are His.
Also, doing good does not guarantee a happy, perfect life. Nobody will experience an ideal life. We can’t search for happiness and perfection in a fallen world! The righteous will suffer, but the good thing is that the righteous have God and aren’t fighting alone. God doesn’t show partiality. He definitely doesn’t favor the wicked over the righteous, as Job inferred at times.
It is easy to read the book of Job and have questions of why? Why would God even allow satan to mess with Job? Why would God let Job go through so much anguish, even though he was a righteous man? These are questions that we cannot answer, but what we know is that whether good or bad, God is with us. He is at work at all times, even when we cannot perceive him. We have to trust and be faithful in every circumstance. Also, there is no promise of a life without suffering. We will suffer in this life in some way. We will experience hard circumstances and confusing situations. But we have to remember God’s grace and His sovereignty. He is in complete control.
Our stories may not end like Job’s story, but one thing is for sure: if we stay obedient to God, stay trusting in God, and not turn away from Him, we will one day receive what we were promised: eternal life. There is no resolution better than that!