Matthew Henry’s Commentary on this chapter of Job remarks that both Bildad and Eliphaz were like the calamities that beset Job in that these friends sought to drive Job from his integrity and destroy his relationship with God. Thus assisting Satan with his efforts to have Job blame God for his troubles.
Yesterday Peter and Elizabeth noted how people travel differently through their troubles and some witness to God being present with them and help them carry their burdens.
Today, I want to look in my memory mirror for a little while. I’d like you to join me and get out your own mental mirror or viewer. (Its ok, you’ll be conducting your own private viewing.)
Wendy and I too have personal contact with friends and family whose lives are going through such difficulty that in some ways the level of anguish for each person can be measured on The Job Scale. (An estimate of how their measure of pain and turmoil stands when compared next to Job’s scale of pain and turmoil.)
I’m sure you know friends and family in these circumstances and you too have experienced or are experiencing such pain and turmoil.
Today I want to focus on what we do as friends of those who are in turmoil and pain.
We can be too ready with a quick word of comment that comes out wrong. Too ready to agree with the uninformed bystander who says something like “Why is God letting this happen?” or “Where’s God in this?” or:”Why isn’t God doing something about this?”
Oops – there’s the time I said “You’ll be right” to a friend who’s relative had just died and walked off!
Ouch – And there’s another time when I replied to someone else’s question about “Why is God letting this happen to Joesy*?” with “I don’t know.” and I didn’t and haven’t kept in touch with Joesy.
If you will allow me to turn the ‘I’ in this blog to ‘We’ again – then I’d note that these outcomes aren’t what God intended for His church, Not how He intended His company of believers to act. The church’s bridegroom, Jesus, gave us good concrete examples of how we are to act as brothers and sisters. How we are to support, in prayer and by actions, those around us who are burdened by pain and turmoil.
The one that stands out for me at this moment is Jesus’ care for his mother as He hung on the cross dying. (Recorded in John 19:26)
So it is with a deeper understanding of our bibles, through study and discussion, through prayer and preaching, and then with improving application we become more confident and more aware of those around us who are in turmoil and whom we can assist. Whom we can walk with and support as God would have us do..
Perhaps those who we can help, and demonstrate God’s love to, are only next door or a phone call away?
*Name changed to protect the guilty writer.