I left Fort Collins early this morning to come to Denver with my friend Jim Welker. We traveled to the Denver Convention Center for the start of the Western Conservative Summit. The special morning session featured Sarah Palin and Donald Trump. It was a packed house with some committed Trump supporters and protestors. It all made for an interesting start to the weekend.
BIBLE VERSE FOR TODAY… “But I know my living Redeemer, and He will stand on the dust at last….yet I will see God in my flesh.…and not as a stranger…” Job 19:25 HCSB
One of the most familiar verses of the Book of Job expresses the confidence of Job in light of the “comfort” of his friends and the despair of his situation. Job was confused, but remained convicted about the integrity of God’s character, just as God was confident of the integrity of Job’s character.
We see the emotional toll of Job’s suffering when he laments, “He has removed my brothers from me; my acquaintances have abandoned me. My relatives stop coming by, and my close friends have forgotten me. My house guests and female servants regard me as a stranger; I am a foreigner in their sight. I call for my servant, but he does not answer, even if I beg him with my own mouth.…All of my best friends despise me, and those I love have turned against me.” (Job 19:13-16,19 HCSB)
It is clear, suffering is not a drawing card. People don’t know how to respond, what to say, what to do; so often they do nothing; they keep their distance. Job was feeling the brunt of this rejection from family and friends.
Yet in the midst of it all we see this profound declaration about God and Job’s future, “But I know my living Redeemer, and He will stand on the dust at last. Even after my skin has been destroyed, yet I will see God in my flesh. I will see Him myself; my eyes will look at Him, and not as a stranger…” (Job 19:25-27 HCSB)
Regardless of how he felt, Job had confidence in God’s ultimate intervention and revelation of himself. Job knew God was a “living Redeemer.” His prayers were not futile, his feelings would not have the final say. Job’s faith allowed him to say, “the distance I am feeling will not last forever. I will see the Lord and will be at peace and at home in His presence.”
Job ends this discourse with the words, “…My heart longs within me.” (Job 19:27 HCSB) That is the confidence of the person who knows that the future will be better than the present, whether the present is good or bad; whether I am in turmoil or in peace.
The funeral service I conducted yesterday was for a man, 75 years old, who died within seven weeks of a cancer diagnosis. But adjusting to the “inevitable” for him was not a struggle because of his faith and his faithfulness; both to his God and his family. He had confidence that the future would be better than anything he had experienced in this life. There is a word for that….”HOPE.”
Prayer for today… “Lord, thank you for the hope you give, that our future will be better than our present. That there is a glory that awaits those who place their faith and trust in You. With Job may our hearts cry, “I know my Redeemer lives…and I shall see Him.”