We always talk about the patience of Job. How he endured so much and yet was so patient. As I’ve been reading through Job, I’ve noticed that he’s short tempered with his friends. A bit cynical and downright crabby.
His three friends come to visit him, and after spending days on end not saying a word, Eliphaz (Eli-faz) speaks up. And he does a tirade on how this must all be Job’s fault. That he must have done something wrong in order for God to punish him. He must have done something wrong to endure God’s wrath.
Rewind just a little bit here. After Job’s families’ death and the loss of everthing he had and owned, the enemy, Satan said to God that if Job were to suffer “skin for skin” then he’d rebuke God. And so Job is now suffering disease and pain and aches. He is suffering physically. God’s only rule is that the devil not kill him.
And Eliphaz is saying that Job must have done something wrong. Job curses the day he was born, wishing it never happened. That doesn’t sound patient to me. He then turns on Eliphaz, after Eliphaz’s long speech. Job says that he’s done nothing wrong. He’s not hurt anyone. He’s always been faithful. And anyway, doesn’t he have a right to complain about it all. Doesn’t he have a right to be upset. I mean, c’mon now, he’s the one suffering, not Eliphaz.
Job is to the point where he wants God to kill him. He’s in that much pain. That much torment. And his friends have given him no help at all. They’ve basically been pains in the you know what and not helpful.
Job then says this
“At least I can take comfort in this: Despite the pain, I have not denied the words of the Holy One.” Job 6:10 NLT
Is he upset? Yes. Is he hurting? Yes. Are his friends not helping? Yes, you better believe it. But he still doesn’t let go of God. There’s a tether there holding him to God. There’s still something that God is doing in his life that doesn’t allow him to let go of God.
God never lets go of you. We don’t always know why bad things happen. I’ll be honest to say that I think there are three reasons why bad things happen to us. The first is our own stupidity and sinfulness. We make bad decisions and those bad decisions lead to problems in our lives. The second is when other stupid people make stupid mistakes that affect us. Someone makes a bad decision and that then leads to us getting hurt. And the third one, well that one we just don’t know why but they do happen. Bad things sometimes just happen and we can’t say why because we don’t have access to the heavenly realms above.
That’s the thing about Job, we get access as readers to the heavenly realms about what’s going on. Job doesn’t have that access. He doesn’t know what’s going on. But he does know it’s not because of what he’s done. He knows it’s not something he’s done wrong.
Is he in pain? Yes. Does he become cynical and a bit snappish towards his friends? Yes. But he doesn’t let go of God.
What are you going through right now? You’re going to become snappish. You’re going to be a bit cynical. But don’t let go of God because God won’t let go of you. God holds you in his hand. He walks with you through the trying times. He won’t let go so don’t let go of Him.