Ever know of someone with a Job-like story?
Where you think, what is the Lord doing with this person? Though I haven’t personally met someone undergoing extreme hardship like Job’s, I have heard stories on the media.
One woman’s story, which has stuck with me, entails losing four of her close loved ones within the span of two years. And I couldn’t help but think that God was allowing such suffering in this woman’s life for some substantial reason.
Much like in Job’s story, he was innocent despite receiving hardship. He lost his crop, family, and health within a short period of time; he lost everything.
His friends started turning against him, finding fault by the very existence of his terrible circumstances. But Job was, in fact, tempted and eventually sinned.
How? By questioning, complaining, and challenging God on his innocence.
Revealing The Path
He fell away from believing in God’s power, wisdom, and just ways. Maybe we haven’t undergone a Job experience, but I do believe we all have gone through terrible hardship.
God doesn’t shield us from that because of our free will to choose our paths. Just as a child may make bad choices, good parents allow that child to withstand the consequences so that they may learn the right path next time.
God also uses great suffering to reveal more of Himself and His ways to us. In Job’s case, God reminded Him of His power, wisdom, and understanding.
All of these things that we cannot grasp as humans in our limited minds. But through our hardships, we are able to be humbled.
If we have issues with finances, family, or our physical selves, our impulse is to figure it out ourselves. This process might start out strong in faith, knowing that God is in control and working for our good.
But then the doubt sets in. As time goes by and our circumstances don’t improve, but get worse, we start to have our faith replaced by discouragement.
Before we know it, we are questioning and complaining. Eventually, we challenge God with our indignation and disobedience.
So how to endure and remain faithful? How do we prevent sinning against God when the pain is so overwhelming?
Here are 3 simple steps for enduring and overcoming your hardship:
1. Humble Yourself
Then Job answered the Lord and said, “Behold, I am insignificant; what can I reply to You? I lay my hand on my mouth. Once I have spoken, and I will not answer; even twice, and I will add nothing more.” (Job 40:3-5)
Job humbles himself before God, but he does this after God expresses His mightiness from chapters 38 to 41. So God’s lesson to us is that even though we believe we don’t deserve hardship, we should not exalt ourselves above God’s judgement to allow our suffering.
2. Pray & Seek
Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. (Matthew 7:7-12)
Pray against complaining, questioning, and challenging what God has allowed in your life. Ask Him for anything and everything to endure your trial, especially encouragement and help.
3. Turn Away
He must turn away from evil and do good; he must seek peace and pursue. (1 Peter 3:11)
Sin may not be the cause of your hardship, but it may occur in the midst of and be the cause of prolonged suffering. Job had prolonged his hardship because he thought God was treating him unfairly and unjustly, and so we read of God influencing Job with His truth in order to turn away from evil and repent.
So consider your suffering and if you have turned against God before or during it. And take heart that the Holy Spirit gave these steps through this Scripture:
If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. (2 Chronicles 7:14)
And we read that Job humbles himself, gives a prayer of repentance, and turns away from evil and toward peace among all (and especially peace with God). After he does all these things, God restores and blesses Job immensely; He blesses these days more than Job’s previous ones (refer to Job 42:10-12).
So if you struggle with great suffering, know that God is still sovereign over all of it. We may not understand His ways, but be reassured that He will bless you when you stick closely by Him!
Like this printable? Share it on Pinterest!
Post Question: Are you undergoing hardship? If you or someone you know is, comment below and I will pray for you or him/her!