In the eye of the storm

Posted by Abound in Grace

We all have good days and bad days. We all have good weeks and bad weeks. Occasionally for some, there are good months and bad months. Unfortunately, some people even go through a good or a bad year, possibly even a span of years with the same theme. Our attitude and integrity through those bad or down times are the things of importance. Will our attitudes be glorifying to the Lord? Will we compromise our own integrity for earthly comforts? Can we possibly be a witness to others through the seasons that try us the most? We can. We should. We are called to a higher standard by the choice to walk with Christ. We are called to be a witness through our lifestyle, attitudes, and actions; with or without verbal communication. I want others to be able to see Christ in me, no matter what I am facing, no matter what I am going through. I want my spot in heaven secured by how I choose to live my life and how I choose to respond to the environment that surrounds me.

Job was a man that was considered to be upright and perfect. He feared God and turned away from evil. He had everything that a man could want. He had hundreds and thousands of various different animals. He had a family complete with children (a lot of them) and a very immense household. Job was also the most prodigious man in the entire east. Most of us can not even imagine that sort of life. Job had it going on, didn’t he? Well, he did, at least until Satan was given permission from the Lord to begin testing Job. The Lord told Satan that he could take all that Job had but not to touch Job himself.

So it began... We often feel like that and can sort of know when things are going to really start getting sticky, right? I wonder at this point if Job was really in a whirlwind or if he could sense the calm before the storm. Often times when we go through the stormy seasons of life we say something like “It’s been one thing after another”. What we mean is that there has been more than one bad thing happen within a relatively short amount of time. What happened to Job was literally one thing after another. First, Satan took the oxen and killed the servants. He made sure to leave just one person alive in each situation to be able to deliver the bad news to Job. So here is this messenger telling Job this news that five hundred oxen were taken and all the servants killed, when up comes another messenger. This next guy says to Job that his seven thousand sheep and the workers that cared for them were all killed by fire that rained down from heaven. Now I don’t know about you, but I can’t even picture what seven thousand sheep would look like. Needless to say, Job’s having a pretty bad day.

Scripture tells us that while that second messenger is telling Job what happened to the sheep another messenger came to him. This time they tell Job that all three thousand of his camels were taken and all the servants that tended them were slain. Then another messenger runs up and starts delivering even more bad news that Jobs’ sons were all killed because the house collapsed on them. Scripture says the day that this all went down that Jobs’ daughters were feasting with his sons. Even though later it only mentions that his sons were killed, I think that his daughters being killed as well, is implied. When I read this story, I picture these messengers, one after the next, frantically running up to Job to tell him what happened. They probably assumed that the other messengers were just visiting with Job or chit chatting with him. So they were probably interrupting each other thinking that they were the only one with urgent news. In what probably seemed like a moment’s time, Job lost everything. Job has nothing left at this point except his health and his wife and he still falls down on the ground and worships the Lord. Could you do the same?

Satan took almost everything that Job had and failed at getting Job to curse God. I bet Satan really cringed when Job fell to the ground worshipping. Satan had to come up with something else so he attained permission to begin attacking Job physically as long as he did not kill him. So Satan put sore boils all over Job from head to toe. Jobs’ wife made things worse when she questions Job about his integrity and tells him to curse God and die. Job responds asking his wife why they should receive good from God but not evil? To make matters worse, Job had three friends that came to “help him” during that horrible hour. His friends were not helpful though. They came with long-winded, persuasive arguments that Job must have done something to deserve the calamity that fell upon him. Back and forth these three friends went with Job. They condemned Job.

Satan failed at reaching his goal. Job spoke of the Lord and prayed to Him. The Lord told Jobs’ friends that his wrath was ignited against them because they hadn’t spoke of Him the things that were right as Job did. He commanded them to take seven bullocks and seven rams and offer them as a burnt offering; that Job would pray for them. He told them that he would deal with them after their folly (sounds like something I would say, like “and I’ll deal with you later”). The Lord turned the captivity of Job when he prayed for those guys that condemned him. He restored Job. The Lord didn’t just restore him, He gave Job twice as much as he had before the calamity hit.

I love the book of Job. I especially love reading chapters 38 and 39. This is where the awesome power of God is laid out for us, in this particular book. Each of us can relate to Job on some level, we have all lost something or went through one of those seasons of life that make you think what next? Now, this doesn’t mean that if we stand strong for God in the midst of terrible times that we will get twice as much as we lost. I believe our rewards are being stored up in heaven (because you never see a hearse pulling a U-haul and maybe because none of us are perfect and upright). God will restore us. He will sustain us. Strive to wade through those murky waters and come out closer to the Lord, no matter how horrible or terrifying it may be. At least that is my goal…

This entry was posted on Mar 24, 2010 at Wednesday, March 24, 2010 . You can follow any responses to this entry through the .