People let other people down. The same people who loved Job, who hung on to his every word and honored him, turned their backs on him as soon as bad things started happening. In today’s world, we’d call them fair weather friends. Job went from a respectable pillar of society to an untouchable seemingly overnight. That had to hurt. No wonder he complained!
Job blamed God for all his tragedies and repeatedly asked for a hearing to find out what the charges were against him. He did not see God’s ultimate purpose in allowing all the hurt; all Job could see was the hurt itself. In those days, people believed that suffering happened as a consequence for some past sin. Job mused over his past and could not find any sins that he had done that were bad enough to have brought on all this punishment.
But Jesus taught us in John 9 that suffering does not happen because of past sins.
1As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. 2His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”3“Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life.
It’s probably certain that the blind man, like Job, didn’t see his blindness as a canvas against which God’s work might one day be displayed.
Just as I don’t see how my anxiety might one day be a canvas against which God’s work will one day be painted.
My fear of the water kept me far from the shores of lakes and oceans for many years. My fear of elevators drove me to take flight after flight of stairs. But God’s glory is showcased every time I tell others how His words in the book of Isaiah helped me be courageous enough to learn how to swim. His glory is displayed when those who knew me years ago marvel that today I do take elevators and (sometimes) go on airplanes. I never think about it that way…but when someone who knew me when I was young and terrified of the water will exclaim when they see me jump in and swim across the pool. When they ask, I can tell them Who it is who brought about the change in me: the Lord of Lords — all glory to His name!
How might God display his glory on the canvas of your life?