We all know the story of Job, but I found this interesting. The beginning of the book of Job describes Job like this:
He was blameless—a man of complete integrity. He feared God and stayed away from evil.
Later on in verse eight God describes Job himself as “the finest man in all the earth. He is blameless—a man of complete integrity. He fears God and stays away from evil.” Now we know the rest of the story God allows Satan to test Job and in doing so Satan kills his farmhands, kills all his sheep, steals all his camels, and kills his sons and daughters. Distraught, he does what we all should do at a time like this he praises God. He remains true to his God. Then he gets his second test, Satan takes his health, making him really miserable. Even his wife encourages him to curse God, but Job remains true. After this we get into long debates with Jobs friends, probably more of Satan’s tests to try and get him to speak against God. What I want to focus on is the end of Job:
1 Then Job replied to the Lord:
2 “I know that you can do anything,
and no one can stop you.
3 You asked, ‘Who is this that questions my wisdom with such ignorance?’
It is I—and I was talking about things I knew nothing about,
things far too wonderful for me.
4 You said, ‘Listen and I will speak!
I have some questions for you,
and you must answer them.’
5 I had only heard about you before,
but now I have seen you with my own eyes.
6 I take back everything I said,
and I sit in dust and ashes to show my repentance.”
Look at what he says, “I had only heard about you before, but now I have seen you with my own eyes”. How crazy is it that a man that even God described as what we would call a “Godly man” or a “Good Christian”, a man that didn’t fail even in the face of many painful trials, but still a man that only had a referential experience of God? Maybe this is the reason that God allowed Job to go through what he did, to take him from knowing about God to knowing God.
James says it the best.
Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. 3 For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. 4 So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.
Our trials and troubles, there just might be more to them than life sucking, God might be using them to grow us and our relationship with him. That fills me with a lot of hope.
(PS: This reminds me of Fathered By God)