When You Suffer

The Adversary departed from the Lord’s presence and struck Job with severe sores from the sole of his foot to the top of his head.  Job took a piece of broken pottery to scratch himself and sat down on a mound of ashes.  Job’s wife said to him, “Are you still clinging to your integrity? Curse God, and die.”

Job said to her, “You’re talking like a foolish woman. Will we receive good from God but not also receive bad?” In all this, Job didn’t sin with his lips.
-Job 2:7-10
The Book of Job: How To Relate To God In Your Suffering

The book of Job was the first book of the Bible to be written.  It is the story of one man's suffering.  It is the story of how that man related to God in his suffering.  Job lived during the time of Abraham, Issac, or Jacob.  The first story written down for our edification and revelation about God, is this story of Job.

It is interesting that Job is one of the few books in the Old Testament that mentions Satan and his work.  The most ancient divinely inspired writing is an account of spiritual warfare.  

Job was an honest man, a person of absolute integrity, who feared God and avoided evil (Job 1:1).  Job was also a prophet (James 5:10-11).  James tells us that the prophets set an example for us of patience in suffering.  He particularly mentions Job as the example of perseverance..  

Job survived his ordeal without scripture, without the support of godly friends or family, and without a prophet speaking encouraging words into his life. 

Job's wife and friends were wrong in their advice and counsel.  Job's story teaches us that we should never presume to know why a good or bad event happens to someone (John Telgren).

Will we receive good from God, but not also bad?

  • When bad things happen to you, how do you think about God?  
  • When bad things happen to you, how do you talk about God?  
  • When bad things happen to you, do you worship God?
When things went from bad to worse, for Job, he refused to blame God and give up.  Instead, he made this statement, "will we receive good from God but not also receive bad?"

Job received it.  What does that mean?  It means that he fully experienced the losses, while maintaining his relationship with God.  He kept his integrity.  His feet were firmly planted here, where he was suffering, while his faith was firmly planted in God.
Everything is about our relationship with God.

"Everything that happens to us is really about one thing; our relationship with God" (Graham Cooke, Radical Perceptions).  Who is God to you and for you, in the suffering you are going through?  What you are going through challenges you to upgrade your relationship with God.  

"Satan wants your pain to get you offended at God; God wants your pain to press you into his face with a fervency that will produce change in you."