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Come Forth As Gold

Let me ask you: Have you ever felt like you were being unjustly punished or persecuted? Have you ever been in a place where you were desperately seeking answers from God, but could not find Him anywhere? Have you ever felt totally abandoned by God?

That's exactly how Job felt. Job was a righteous man, who served God faithfully, keeping all His laws, and yet Job suffered tremendous suffering and loss, quite unfairly, through no fault of his own. He lost all his livestock, all his servants, and all his children. He felt like God was punishing him unfairly, as he knew he had done nothing to deserve these tragedies.

Then, to top it all off, he broke out with boils all over his body, from head to toe. As if the sorrow and mental suffering were not enough, now he had to contend with terrible physical suffering as well. Anyone who has ever experienced chronic, long-term, unrelenting pain knows how physical suffering brings you down emotionally as well. It can make you feel like God has abandoned you and is not listening to your prayers.

And finally, adding insult to injury, his best friends, all Godly men themselves, came to him with rebukes and accusations instead of comfort. It's a hard thing to swallow when our friends turn on us. Their betrayal cuts almost as deeply as a physical wound. They had no answers for Job, and he was desperately seeking God. This is what he wrote about seeking God during his extreme afflictions:

Behold, I go forward, but he is not there;
and backward, but I cannot perceive him:
On the left hand, where he does work,
but I cannot behold him: he hides himself
on the right hand, that I cannot see him.
(Job 23:8-9)

Can you relate to that on some level, when you have tried and tried to find God, but can't seem to find Him anywhere? When you're desperate for Him to defend you, heal you, make things right, and comfort you with His presence, but He remains silent? We've probably all been there at some time, to some degree.

Job never knew the reason for his loss, for his pain and suffering. Unbeknownst to him, he was being tested by God. It's hard to keep the faith when we're being tested, isn't it? We are logical people: we want to know WHY these things are happening. We desperately seek answers from God, and it's really hard when we don't know the reason for our suffering. and it feels like He's ignoring us.

Like Job, we have to understand that God is not obligated to explain everything to us. We have to determine to stand on what we DO know: That God is good, that He is just, that we are His child and He loves us, that He is directing every circumstance in our lives, and the end result will be for our good. Even when we cannot see His hand at work, even when it seems like our prayers are unheard and unanswered, God is at work behind the scenes. And He is going to use our current circumstances for our good, somehow. Job recognized this when he said:

But he knows the way that I take:
when he has tested me, I shall
come forth as gold. (Job 23:10)

Dear friend, when everything is going wrong in your life, and it seems like God is nowhere to be found, please be wholly assured of this one thing: Even when you cannot find Him, our loving Heavenly Father knows exactly where you are and what you are going through. He will never allow you to go through one bit more than it takes to accomplish His Divine purpose. And when He has finished testing you, you will come forth as gold. Yes, you will - never doubt it for a minute! Amen!



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