I’ve been thinking about Job a bit lately. Last year I read the book of Job on several occasions when I was walking through a particularly difficult time after my marriage came to an end. It has always been a particularly fascinating book to me for several reasons, not the least of which is the conversation between God and satan in chapter one where God essentially hands Job over into satan’s hands to be tested. If this doesn’t give you pause, you’re not paying attention… 🙂
Another aspect of the book of Job that intrigued me was the council of Job’s friends Eliphaz, Bildad, Temanite and Zophar. At face value they all seem to be giving him incredibly wise and helpful council. In fact the first time I read the book and got to chapter 42 and saw that God rebuked them for their unwise and UNTRUE council I instantly started re-reading the book. Verse 7 says:
7 And so it was, after the Lord had spoken these words to Job, that the Lord said to Eliphaz the Temanite, “My wrath is aroused against you and your two friends, for you have not spoken of Me what is right, as My servant Job has.
However, what made the largest impression on me in the book of Job was God’s full restoration of Job and the blessings that God poured out on him as a result of his faithfulness and unwillingness to curse God, even when faced with otherwise unbearable circumstances.
12 Now the Lord blessed the latter days of Job more than his beginning; for he had fourteen thousand sheep, six thousand camels, one thousand yoke of oxen, and one thousand female donkeys. 13 He also had seven sons and three daughters. 14 And he called the name of the first Jemimah, the name of the second Keziah, and the name of the third Keren-Happuch. 15 In all the land were found no women so beautiful as the daughters of Job; and their father gave them an inheritance among their brothers.
16 After this Job lived one hundred and forty years, and saw his children and grandchildren for four generations.17 So Job died, old and full of days.
Job still suffered many things through his ordeal. His children were all killed in an accident, he was covered from head to toe with painful sores, his friends offered unwise and contrary advice which I’m sure made Job feel even more isolated, and he was all but abandoned by his wife to endure the ordeal alone. But, and it’s a big one, God blessed the latter days of Job’s life more than the first.
When I originally read this statement I failed to realize that God didn’t bring Job’s children back to life, he didn’t remove all memory of the sores and the abandonment from Job’s mind. He created a new life for Job, and one that was even more blessed than the first part of his life. He simply blessed Job to an extent that the pains of the past would be eclipsed by the blessings of the future.
That scripture spoke something to me the day I read it for the first time. However, what it spoke that day wasn’t what came to pass. Instead God had even larger blessings in store for me. Blessings that didn’t resurrect the things that had been lost, but new blessings that would far surpass anything I could have imagined.
Friends, I trust that someone needs to hear this hope. God can, and will rise your circumstances out of the ashes. Does this mean that he’ll resurrect the old from the dead? That’s very possible, you’d better believe it. However, when days fade into weeks and weeks into months and you begin to lose hope that God will work in a situation, fix your eyes on Him and His plans for your future. Trust that what God did for Job he will do for you as well. All you need to do is focus your eyes on Him throughout the process and He will straighten your path and bless you greatly!