The Old Testament book of Job is a great follow-up for anyone reading or preaching through James.
As I consider James’ advice in chapter one, Job is such a great testimony. James states “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.” (James 1:2-3)
Perhaps Job does not particularly relate to being joyful during trials, but definitely in rising above and staying faithful throughout times of struggle. As we read through the first part of Job chapter one, it is first established that Job is a righteous and God-fearing man.
As the account continues, we see that Job is stripped of family, financial security and possessions all at once. It would very difficult to find someone we know who has ever felt this kind of immediate sorrow. Take a minute and ask yourself how you would react?
I must admit that as I ponder my response, I regretfully admit that suicide would likely be in the fore-front of my mind. Yet, how does Job react to the pain and agony of loosing all this?
This morning, I would like to focus on the end of Job, chapter one. It reads, “At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship and said: ‘Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised.’ In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing.” (Job 1:20-22)
It is so incredible to read this description of Job’s response. Just try to picture it. Close your eyes and imagine this grown man laying on the ground with torn clothes weeping, with no family to comfort him. Try to establish how helpless you would feel as a stranger standing next to him.
Just as you are about to speak or reach out to him, you hear the man cry out “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised.” What would you think or say?
If we’re to be honest, most of us would likely think the man had gone insane, and rightfully so considering the circumstances. Yet the truth remains that only someone who is truly devoted to God would be able to speak these words during such turmoil.
What struggle are you facing today? What sorrow has come to pass in your life? Are you feeling like your life is spinning out of control? Do you feel like falling to the ground and weeping? Is so, then fall and weep.
However, in your weeping, can you praise God? Can you remain faithful in your suffering? It may be difficult, but consider our fore-father Job and his trials. Challenge yourself to act in righteousness throughout your distress.
Then when it’s all said and done, consider the blessing that God pours out on his children, when they seek him during sorrow.
Originally posted at QuietMorningsWithHim.com by Jeremy Norton.