I’ve been reading through the Book of Job and came across a gem! “Behold, I go forward, but he is not there, and backward, but I do not perceive him; on the left hand when he is working, I do not behold him; he turns to the right hand, but I do not see him. But he knows the way that I take; when he has tried me, I shall come out as gold” (Job 23:8-10). These words come from Job as the Holy Spirit spoke through him. It was the worst of times for Job. He had suffered the loss of his children, his possessions, and his place in the community. Add to this the condemnation of his closest friends, and we see Job riding out the “perfect storm” of tests. As I speak with people and consider the current “climate” in our country, I believe Job’s message echoes down through the ages to our ears right now. What we are going through with the COVID-19 issues cannot compare to the severity of Job’s tests. However, we find commonality in our human condition of struggle and trials. Living this life is a continuous challenge to believe in what you do not see…while your eyes observe the physical things in front of you. At times Job’s faith seemed to hang by a thread, but God was with him. Job believed even though he could not sense the presence of God or perceive His hand of blessing. Notice in the text above how Job tries to “see” God at work, but the fog of life is too thick. Finally, Job resigns his heart to a bedrock truth. Even though Job could not see God, he knew that God could see him! Job, in faith, declared, “But he knows the way that I take” (v. 10). Job’s genuine faith produced hope that his difficulties were working for good. Just as gold is purified by fire, Job believed in a God who could turn something evil into something good. Can we believe for this right now? We continue to struggle through the effects of COVID-19. Can we declare confidently that God knows our way and is leading us to something good? From the story of Job, we understand that the power of trusting God now, leads to ultimate victory then!
Pastor Mark Boucher