Last Wednesday I felt like I was having a pretty rough day. I felt like I was getting beat up from the feet up. But that day I was really being put to the test. It’s kind of difficult for me to explain the dynamics of everything that was going on that day without explaining the particulars of my job and the politics of the office. It wouldn’t be fair to the people I work with. Let’s just say some of my work was needlessly nitpicked and my ear was chewed off by an angry person regarding a situation that could have been easily resolved if the right information had come my way. I’ll end this paragraph by saying I’m usually a very calm easy going person. I think my interaction with folks out here on the forums and blog sights usually bear this out.
By the time I got home that night I was just beside myself. My wife could just tell right off that things weren’t well for me. I was trying to maintain my composure, but I really wanted to explode. All day I had been crying out to the Lord. I really wanted to just let these temporal things go, but I was so ramped up, it just wasn’t going to happen on my own. Well my wife suggested after dinner that we should have some Bible time. I agreed.
When the time came and we all sat down in the family room, I asked if anybody had any ideas what scripture they wanted to hear. Usually I get “I don’t know” or one person will say one thing or another so that there is no united decision. Typical right? Now my two children in unison say “read Job daddy!”. My kids are 8 & 9. A girl and a boy. How many times do two children of that age agree on anything, let alone have much interest in what scripture to read for the evening? So Job it was. At this point I was still so caught up in the events of the day I didn’t recognize that little sign that the Lord was working yet. My wife of course saw right from the get go. She had been praying for me ever since I got home.
I still didn’t know where to go in Job. We had started reading Job about three or four months ago and had long since moved on to other scripture. I couldn’t remember where we left off. So I just randomly flipped pages and settled on Chapter 33. I’ll post the whole chapter from the NIRV now and follow up afterwards.
Pay attention to everything I say.
2 I’m about to open my mouth.
My words are on the tip of my tongue.
3 What I say comes from an honest heart.
My lips speak only what I know is true.
4 The Spirit of God has made me.
The breath of the Mighty One gives me life.
5 So answer me if you can.
Prepare yourself to face me.
6 In God’s sight I’m just like you.
I too have been made out of clay.
7 You don’t have to be afraid of me.
My hand won’t be too heavy on you.
8 “But I heard what you said.
And here are the exact words I heard.
9 You said, ‘I’m pure. I haven’t sinned in the ways you have charged.
I’m clean. I’m not guilty of doing anything wrong.
10 But God has found fault with me.
He thinks I’m his enemy.
11 He puts my feet in chains.
He watches every step I take.’
12 “But I’m telling you that you aren’t right when you talk like that.
After all, God is greater than a mere man.
13 Why do you claim that God
never answers any of our questions?
14 He speaks in one way and then another.
We might not even realize it.
15 He might speak in a dream or in a vision at night.
That’s when people are sound asleep in their beds.
16 He might speak in their ears.
His warnings might terrify them.
17 He warns men in order to turn them away from sinning.
He wants to keep them from being proud.
18 He wants to stop them from going down into the grave.
He doesn’t want them to be killed with swords.
19 Someone might be punished by suffering in bed.
The pain in his bones might never go away.
20 He might feel so bad he can’t eat anything.
He might even hate the finest food.
21 His body might waste away to nothing.
His bones might have been hidden.
But now they stick out.
22 He might approach the very edge of the grave.
The messengers of death might come for him.
23 “But suppose there is an angel who will speak up for him.
The angel is very special. He’s one out of a thousand.
He will tell that person what is right for him.
24 He’ll be gracious to him. He’ll say to God,
‘Spare him from going down into the grave.
I know a way that can set him free.’
25 Then his body is made like new again.
He becomes as strong and healthy as when he was young.
26 He prays to God and finds favor with him.
He sees God’s face and shouts with joy.
God makes him right with himself again.
27 Then the person comes to others and says,
‘I sinned. I made what was wrong appear to be right.
But I wasn’t punished as I should have been.
28 God set me free. He kept me from going down into the grave.
So I’ll live to enjoy the light that leads to life.’
29 “God does all of those things to people.
In fact, he does them again and again.
30 He wants to stop people from going down into the grave.
Then the light that leads to life will shine on them.
31 “Pay attention, Job! Listen to me!
Be quiet so I can speak.
32 If you have anything to say, answer me.
Speak up. I want to help you be cleared of all charges.
33 But if you don’t have anything to say, listen to me.
Be quiet so I can teach you how to be wise.”
I think it wasn’t until about the 13th verse that it began to dawn on me that the Lord was comforting me right there. He was saying look at Job. Look at the things he went through and cried out in his pain and anguish. Yet I, the Lord am still here watching over you, guiding you and loving you. These things will pass and you will be just fine.
Well, I was in tears at this point. I was praising Him and glorifying His name. He had reached down from the heavens to comfort one of His sheep. I’m not one of the best. I’m not more special than anyone else. I think He would do and has done the same for many others more worthy than this guy. The fact is I think I was being a bit prideful about some of the things that went on that day. Things I had realized and was crying out God to help me overcome. He answered those prayers exactly how it needed to be answered right when it needed to answered. I glorify His Holy name and I think my Lord for His comforting and loving hand upon me! If He did this for me, He will do this for any of His sheep.