By Cindy Bleuler Tucker
The older I get, the more inadequate I feel. Lost dreams, unmet goals, and an aging body coupled with the hard circumstances of life that each of us face cause great discouragement. Sometimes we feel that our particular path in life is more difficult than that of others It is not so much that I ask God “Why do the wicked prosper?” so much as why are there some Christians who have abundant wealth and possessions, beauty, children that are always faithful to the Lord, and go through life seemingly unscathed. If they are sick, they are healed. If a car breaks down, they have adequate funds to fix it or buy a new vehicle. They are well prepared for the major expenses of life and can take lavish vacations 2 or 3 times a year. There is no robbing Peter to pay Paul, no fear of too little money and too much month.
Any time I feel sorry for myself, I look at Job. He was a man who had everything-health, wealth, property, children, and servants. Job was a righteous, God-fearing man “a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil” (Job 1:8). Satan comes to God and declares that the only reason Job is faithful to God is because of all the blessings he receives. God allows Satan to torment Job. In one day he lost his wealth, children, and servants. Job’s FIRST response is to worship and bless the Lord “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.”(1:21)
Oh, that I could readily respond in such a way. Please notice that he was not denying the tragedy. He does tear his robes and shave his head, signs of great grief and mourning. He is acknowledging that God was the creator and source of his blessings and God controls all circumstances. Job still trusts in God’s goodness. Seems impossible? Yes, it is, humanly speaking. Yet I have seen such faith in Christians. A man suffering the pain of bone cancer whose prayer is to be more like Jesus every day and continues to preach to unbelievers. A woman who becomes paralyzed in the same automobile accident that takes her beloved husband’s life. She is a glowing testimony of the strength of Christ as she serves as a mentor to many. The family of Steven Curtis Chapman who continue to serve God and be advocates for adoption after suffering the tragic loss of their youngest child. The citizens of Ringgold, GA praising God as they picked up the broken pieces of their lives in the aftermath of a deadly tornado.
Lord, as we grieve the loss that is a part of our fallen lives, may we turn to you. Give us “the peace that passes all understanding (Philippians 4:7) and give us the privilege of comforting others as we have been comforted. (II Corinthians 1:4) May we, as Job, look up to You when bad things happen. Amen.