Saturday, July 23, 2011
Let him who walks in the dark, who has no light,
trust in the name of the LORD and rely on his God.
When life is hard and we don't understand, it's helpful to remember the story of Job--and see what we can learn from his life.
Remember him? They man in the Bible who lost practically everything.
Job had some very dark days. He became overwhelmingly sad and began to give up entirely. Hope had faded. He complained about his circumstances and thought that he would never be happy again. It simply made no sense to Job why his entire life had crumbled around him.
Perhaps your breakup wasn’t as bad as Job’s horrible life. But whether your were simply disappointed or downright devastated you may also be wrestling with your own ideas about God’s character.
You may not be able to perceive what God is doing in your life right now, but perhaps, like Job, your question of “why?” will turn to “Who?” as you draw nearer to the One who has the answers. As you come to know God more and trust Him, you realize the one who takes care of the vast universe and all that is in it, also has His hands—and heart—on you.
In the darkest time of Job’s life he learned to see with new eyes as he experienced God, beholding him and coming to a place of radical life transformation.
“So often our primary ambition is to escape pain or feel good or be delivered from a problem when instead we need to keep our focus on the big picture of what God is doing in our life and the lives of others through pain or problems,” said Anne Graham Lotz in Why? “Our principle aim,” she continues, “should be to glorify God, not to be honored or to be healthy or to be happy.”
Of course, being happy or healthy is not a bad thing; it’s just not a first thing. Often we do not understand what God is up to because, well, He is God. And we are not.
There will always be an element of mystery in why God does what He does; we will never have all the answers this side of heaven. But we can rest assured that the One who loves us most, will reveal all that we need to know when we need to know it. And that is enough.
Many times, during or after a goodbye with a guy, I’ve grappled with my own “why?’ questions. We could have been really good together God, why didn’t this work out? And over time and many tears later, I’ve come to a place where I could say to God, “I do not understand, but I will trust You.”
When all else is gone, God remains.
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)
Jackie M. Johnson is an author and freelance writer in Colorado. Her hope-filled and encouraging books include "Power Prayers for Women," "When Love Ends and the Ice Cream Carton Is Empty" and "Powerful Prayers for Challenging Times." Jackie also writes the Living Single blog on Dr. James Dobson's Family Talk website.