IN THIS CORNER: MY SERVANT JOB! 

7 02 2018

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As I write this, I have no idea who won the Super Bowl. As I write this, I am very nervous about the game and I am not even playing. As I write these words, of this much I do know and that no matter what the Philadelphia Eagles do tonight, there is still an eternal prize waiting for all of us who trust in Jesus. There is a trophy waiting that nothing on earth may trash and no amount of rust can ruin. I surely hope we win but there is still no way we can lose. God has been gracious when we deserved nothing good.

 Which leads me to today’s question. When bad things happen, why more often than not do they seem to happen to positive people? Why? We are studying the Book of Job on weekends at the Lighthouse Church and after the many horrible events that occur in the first two chapters, Job and his wife either must find the strength to pick up the pieces or else they will fall to pieces. It makes me wonder if what happened to Job had happened to me, what would my response be? Would I still be worshiping God today?

 Job responds to adversity with adoration and it is no where near just surface worship! After literally being hammered by the hounds of hell, Job doesn’t fall in defeat or even despair, but in utter dependence upon God! The enemy wasted no time in attacking Job and he went after him relentlessly. When will mankind ever learn that when it comes to attempting to negotiate with the prince of darkness, there is no level playing field at all? Hell never plays by the rules and always proceeds to scheme, claw and cheat its way into paralyzing people into an utter state of dominance. Kick a man when he’s down, you bet! If it means having to lie right to our face with an air of sickening sweet sincerity then what is the problem? We wrestle not against flesh and blood and if we don’t stand with the King of kings and Lord of lords then we don’t stand any chance of standing at all.

 Job becomes a human “Ground Zero!” The devil throws everything at Job including the kitchen sink. Job’s symptoms include inflamed ulcerous sores, persistent itching, degenerative changes in facial skin, loss of appetite, anxiety and depression, sores that don’t quit, worms forming, breathing difficulty, darkening eyelids, foul breath, weight loss, pain, high fever with chills and diarrhea. It appears that Job experienced every side effect that any television commercial might list when pushing it latest miracle drug. The real miracle here is that what might have folded most of humanity only made Job more determined to cling to God! 

 The enemy will try to recruit even so called allies to discourage those who are trying to obey God. Mrs. Job couldn’t muster much more than just encouraging her hubby to curse God and die! Now before we are too hard on her, she was reeling too. She had lost ten children. She too suffered great loss of possessions. She lost the position of being the “First Lady” to the godliest of men. She lost her companion and best friend.

 I know how she felt. These last few years I have had to miss many family major events because of nonstop physical issues. It wasn’t bad enough that I had to battle my body being rebellious; it all forced me into being alone. The last three times that I have been hospitalized, I was in isolation. It was adding insult to injury. It caused anxiety, depression and emotional strain. Yet in it all and through it all, I knew God was there. I may have yelled at him and vented my frustration at a pretty rapid fire pace, but I sensed that God had not abandoned me. It was only the Lord that kept me from giving up. It was only the Lord that saved me from looking for a rubber room to bash my head into the wall forever.   

 I have been meditating upon the question that Job asks his wife in chapter 2. “Shall we accept only good from God, and not trouble?” Doesn’t God have the total right and freedom to be God? “In all this, Job did not sin with his lips.”  The Hebrew words for worship are literally, “to kiss the Lord.” In everything that happened to Job he never went kissing on anyone other than his God. Job was faithful to his vows. Job was committed to his faith.

 All lives are full of trials and I hate to be a bearer of bad news, but we need to remember there are always more hardships to come. Don’t be surprised! And since none of us are commuting back and forth from Heaven daily, we must come to grips that we are residents of a fallen world, and that means that even others who truly love us still might give us lousy counsel! Don’t be fooled! And if our Lord Jesus himself had to deal with the pitfalls of planet Earth, what makes us assume that we might get off free? Don’t be naive!

 How can you properly prepare yourself for the trials and tribulations that will come into your life? How can you seek out the Lord and better be ready when all hell breaks loose? How can you hold on when your heart goes numb? How can you make things add up when the numbers don’t make sense? Can you win when you lose? Can you endure the cross knowing that the promise of resurrection is still on the table? Will you believe Jesus when he promises that he will never leave you or forsake you? Consider these questions carefully! Your answers will determine whether you are looking for a quick fix or a permanent rescue! God redeems, rescues and restores all those who trust in him. Job put everything he had into that present truth and it saved his future possibilities. I’m in Job’s corner! How about you? 

 


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