Beloved, pain is highly personal, either emotional, physical and can be both. One may suffer emotional pain from a broken heart. We recently saw the worst kind of this with Debbie Reynolds when her daughter died, she passed away the next day from a broken heart. I’m sure the stroke caused her death but the sadness predisposed her and she succumbed to the illness when the stoke occurred. Physically our pain can be describe as acute, chronic or acute on chronic pain. My knee pain is acute at this phase of healing but should it linger it will become chronic. My migraines are chronically bothersome but the pain’s acutely real and wearisome. Which leads to Job, Job is in a state of grief and suffering emotionally, the loss of his kids, his staff, his wealth is enough to have bought any one to a major episode of depression.
Job’s depression deepens as he continues his lament in the chapters we are reading 17-20. He speaks in verses 13-14 of chapter 17 of his longing for death in the grave. His eyes were swollen from crying and for a man to admit to crying he must be depressed. He states in the verses, “People laugh at me, they slap me, hand me over to sinners, I was living quietly until He shattered me.” Have you ever felt that even God was your enemy? This is how low Job is feeling. But then Job says.”I have done no wrong. My friends scorn me.” Have you ever lost a friend because your needs were too many?
My sweet friend Dr. Michelle Bengtson has written a great book about depression and the events in life that may trigger depression as her depression was from a birth of a child. Her book is Hope Prevails: Insights from a Doctor’s Personal Journey through Depression.
Dr. Michelle mentions in her book that sometimes our friends do not know how to handle depression, and loss. She wrote a great blog “Don’t Say It” and it is not helpful to the person going through cancer or any illness to hear another person’s chemo story or that someone else suffered worse than you are suffering or the phrase “this to shall pass”. http://www.drmichellebengtson.com
Job continues to defend himself as he feels his spirit’s crushed. When you don’t feel good, sometimes you don’t want to talk and you certainly don’t want to have to defend yourself. Job’s friends are with him but instead of defending him and offering him love and support they are giving him lectures. I am fierce when I am with my friend ill in the hospital partly because I am a nurse and a hospital case manager. But when I am the patient I am vulnerable and sensitive and then I cry and I get embarrassed. Can you relate? Job says in these verse in chapter 17 that his hope has disappeared, he can’t find his hope, then he says, in verse 16, “NO, my hope will go down with me to the grave we will rest together in the dust.”
Bilad and Zophar in Chapters 18 and 20 can’t find any sin so the best that Zophar is accuse Job of land grabbing and oppressing the poor. There is no evidence of these things. Bilad tried to get him on the cattle. Job blames God in chapter 19 but in the end he knows His Redeemer lives.
I Know that My Redeemer lives and that in the end he will stand upon the earth. And after my skin has been destroyed. Yet in my flesh I will see God. Job 19:25-26 NIV
January 8, 2017 reading Job 21-23
What is the name of the two friends?
What does the friends try to accuse Job of doing?
How do you defend your friends?
Ultimately, Job says his hope has disappeared but then he says it has reappeared, who is the person that HOPE represents? _ _ S _ _
How are you doing on your goals or working toward your word in 2017?
Listen to How Great Thou Art
Any one suffering from depression that would like a book and cannot afford Hope Prevails please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will be happy to get you a copy.
Father God, let us not be guilty of saying silly things like “this to shall pass” or talking when we should be listening. Lord, let us be faithful in the little things. In Jesus name. Amen.