Toward the end of Randy Alcorn’s If God Is God, he offers some helpful insights from Job’s story for those who are suffering:
Job has taught me many valuable lessons, including these:
- Life is not predictable or formulaic.
- Most of life’s expectations and suffering’s explanations are simplistic and naïve, waiting to be toppled.
- When the day of crisis comes, we should pour out our hearts to God, who can handle our grief and even our anger.
- We should not turn from God and internalize our anger, allowing it to become bitterness.
- We should weigh and measure the words of friends, authors, teachers, and counselors, finding whatever truth they might speak without embracing their errors or getting derailed by their insensitivities.
- We should not insist on taking control by demanding a rational explanation for the evils and suffering that befall us.
- We should look to God and ask him to reveal himself to us; in contemplating his greatness we will come to see him as the Answer above all answers.
- We should trust that God is working behind the scenes and that our suffering has hidden purposes that one day, even if not in this life, we will see.
- We should cry out to Jesus, the mediator and friend whom Job could only glimpse, but who indwells us by grace.
(See Tuesday’s post for more on If God Is Good.)