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The book of Job is considered by some to be devastating, others to be comforting, and still others to be confusing. Some see God as betting with Satan, others see Him as abandoning Job, and others see Him as sovereign in it all.
One thing is abundantly clear to me as I’m reading: I have a lot to learn from Job.
Lessons We Need to Learn From Job
Whenever I read the book of Job, I am personally challenged and encouraged. I have had some seriously rough times and God has always been faithful. Job’s story is proof that even if it gets even worse, I have no reason to be afraid.
As I’m reading I find myself praying for God to strengthen my faith, hope, and trust in Him so that I might respond as Job in trials that I face in this life. Here are some lessons we can glean from the first part of Job.
Walk well before the Lord.
Job chapter 1 tells us that Job was blameless. He repented of his own sins and even offered sacrifices for his children. (Job 1:1-5)
Sometimes I’m not that quick to repentance. And honestly, I’ve never repented for my children’s sins. I’ve prayed for them to, but I’ve never really cried out to God on their behalf. I think that needs to change.
There’s a world of difference between praying about someone and praying for someone. There’s an even greater difference when you intercede for them. I do that on occasion, but I think after reading how Job cared for his kids I’ll do it more. What do you think about that?
Worship God even in your hard times.
Job didn’t stop crying out to the Lord, ever. His life was wretched and he still trusted God. The Lord gives and the Lord takes, but he is to be blessed. Wow!
In fact, his first response after weeping over his children’s deaths was to fall and worship God even in his sorrow. (Job 1:20)
May God stir our hearts so that even in the face of great loss our response is truly that of worship. Job didn’t worship out of gratitude, but rather out of relationship.
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Don’t abandon your integrity.
Even Job’s wife told him to curse God and die. But he sat and waited for God to redeem his life. He trusted God’s goodness in the face of all that was not good. (Job 2:9-10)
Your faith in God is your alone. You determine your response. Job is a prime example of this. If anyone could have claimed that he was a victim and used his life’s circumstances as a reason to be less a man of integrity, it was Job.
And yet he stood firm because his hope was in God.
Just because your friends care about you and profess to believe in your God, you can’t assume their wisdom is godly.
Sometimes, even when we love God, we just can’t see a situation with eternal perspective. Or we trust logic over faith. That means that we can give crummy advice, even when we don’t think that’s what it is. (Job 16:2)
Job had some solid friends, but they just couldn’t see God’s hand in Job’s situation and they obviously missed God’s heart for Job, too.
When you doubt everything around you, don’t doubt God.
God has wisdom and understanding. No matter how confused you are or how overwhelmed life is making you, He is not confused or scared or unable. No, He is GOD. (Job 12:13)
God has drawn boundaries around our lives.
Perhaps the most comforting part of Job to me is the emphasis on God’s power. He protected Job. He told the enemy exactly how far he could go, and that was that. If God has let something past the boundary around my life, I know He has sufficient grace to pour over me to survive. (Job 1:12)