How Do I Interpret Suffering?
“How do I interpret suffering, that which is typically viewed as evil, in the light of an all-powerful God who is sovereign?” Without understanding how everything fit in the construct of his life, Job depended on the truth that God is good. This allowed Job to cry out to God in reverent fear with the hope of receiving mercy. How does this suffering coincide with the goodness of God? Job’s line of questioning did not doubt God’s moral character, but in deference to His moral character: “Why are these things happening in light of who You are?” Job’s striving was to understand how to live with God’s plan.
“Be silent now and leave me alone.Job 13:13–16 NLT
Let me speak, and I will face the consequences.
Yes, I will take my life in my hands
and say what I really think.
God might kill me, but I have no other hope.
I am going to argue my case with him.
But this is what will save me—I am not godless.
If I were, I could not stand before him.”
HOW DOES THIS APPLY TO ME?
After a fresh encounter with God and His sovereignty, Job could see with new eyes the awesomeness of God. God is relevant to every area of life because He alone “causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them” (Rom. 8:28 NLT). Instead of striving to understand why, we should endeavor to know who God is. As we grow in our knowledge of Him we can move more easily past the barriers that obstruct a trusting relationship.
God, thank You for giving Your Holy Spirit to help me in my weakness. I don’t know what You want me to pray for. But Your Holy Spirit prays for me with groanings that cannot be expressed in words. And because You know my heart, You know what the Spirit is saying, for the Spirit pleads for me in harmony with Your own will. I know that You cause everything to work together for the good of those who love You and are called according to Your purpose for them. . . .Rom. 8:26–28
(excerpts from Desperate Dependency by J. Kirk & Melanie D. Lewis)
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