“Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?”
Job 2:10 (NIV)
Some years ago a wonderful young wife and mother was diagnosed with a very serious cancer. The surgeon gave her the details of what had to be done and the risks of disfigurement—and possible death later—from the disease. He encouraged her to speak with her family about the difficult situation and get back to him as soon as possible. If she agreed to the operation he would schedule her for immediate surgery.
It only took a day or two for the family to agree she should proceed. The surgery was then set for the following week.
At church, the Sunday between her diagnosis and her operation, she received an outpouring of love and assurances of prayer for herself and the young family. One church member who was new to the faith and loved the young woman asked the question, “Why you? You do so much good for others and you have a young family at home.”
Naturally the patient was very anxious to survive and see her family grow up into useful adults. She was also very happy doing her service in the community and her local church. But she immediately came back with the question, “Why not me?”
From her earliest years of being a Christian she had never thought that she would necessarily escape the common trials and sorrows of life. Her reason for becoming a Christian did not include the notion that this would guarantee her an easy ride and a joyful entrance into heaven at the end of the journey.
This person became a follower of Jesus simply because it was the right thing to do. She read her Bible and was led by the Holy Spirit to see that her Creator deserved first place in her life. Once she was aware of her lack of a relationship with the Lord, she repented and believed in Jesus as the Resurrected Saviour of all who believe (Acts 16:31).
For some years her life was happy and uneventful. Everything seemed to go well. Then, suddenly her good health disappeared and her life was at risk. She never doubted for a moment that the Lord was still with her. She really believed a promise made by Jesus to always be with His people (Matthew 28:20). Whether she lived to a good old age or went to heaven in her late 30’s was not something that traumatized her. Now, over 20 years after that surgery, the woman lives as a healthy and happy wife, mother and grandmother.
This was the same attitude exhibited by Job in the words of our verse today. His world had gone on so wonderfully for many years. Then sudden and dreadful suffering replaced his tranquil lifestyle. When his wife suggested that he, “…curse God and die.” (Job 2:9), he called her comment that of a “foolish woman”.
Have you been told to “curse God and die.”, because of your sorrowful situation? Are you tempted to turn from the God Who made you, and give up on living?
I encourage you to get out a Bible and read the book of Job. Then ponder the Gospel of Luke that speaks so wonderfully of Jesus working with those who suffer. Consider how amazing is this One Who comes alongside those who sorrow and brings comfort and strength to live through the problem. Those who trust in Jesus find His grace and strength to be all they need now and forever.